Banham leads Gophers past UMKC

Minnesota tied a season high in points in a 87-49 win.

by Nickalas Tabbert

The Gophers women’s basketball team defeated Missouri-Kansas City 87-49 on Friday night at Williams Arena.

Minnesota (8-3) never trailed en route to tying its highest point total this season.

Sophomore Rachel Banham scored a team-high 29 points. She made five 3-pointers and shot 11-for-17 from the field. Kayla Hirt added 14 points on 6-for-8 shooting and five rebounds.

Six Gophers players scored eight points or more.

Coach Pam Borton said she liked how her team came out defensively and pressured the ball to start the second half. The Gophers started the second half with a 23-6 run. Hirt scored six of her 14 points in a two-minute span to cap the scoring run.

“I thought we came out in the second half even stronger than when we started the game,” Borton said.

The Gophers outrebounded the Kangaroos 36-27 and scored 24 points off turnovers compared to UMKC’s four.

Minnesota shot 60 percent from the field as a team. It used a 32-11 run midway through the period to take a 46-29 lead at halftime.

The Gophers led by as much as 40 points in the second half.

Minnesota is now 6-1 at Williams Arena this season. It will host Robert Morris on Sunday at Williams Arena as part of a five-game homestand.