Tritons fall short

—Photo by Paul DeCoursey Humboldt graduate Avery Terwilliger looks to dribble against Kirkwood on Saturday.

The Iowa Central women’s basketball team got off to a strong start against second-ranked (NJCAA Div. II) Kirkwood here on Saturday, but the Eagles were too much down the stretch in a 72-47 victory.

The Tritons (8-9 overall, 1-0 in the ICCAC) built a 17-8 lead by the end of the first quarter. The Eagles (15-3, 1-0) rallied to pull ahead 25-23 by halftime, though, then out-scored Iowa Central by 23 points in the second half.

”I loved our intensity and execution for the majority of the first half,” ICCC head coach Kelly Kruger said. ”The third quarter (Kirkwood held a 29-12 advantage) was a disappointment. We need to shoot better and execute on offense to take the pressure off our defense.

”The next game is the most important game.”

North Union graduate Sarah Rolling led the Tritons with 15 points. Emma O’Donoghue came off the bench to add 11.

The Eagles were paced by Tayana Wilson’s 16 points. Megan Axcell (13), Olivia Usher (12) and Leah Robinson (10) also reached double figures for Kirkwood, which hit 11 three-point baskets and held a 24-8 edge in points off turnovers.

Iowa Central returns to action on Wednesday against Southwestern at 5:30 p.m.

KIRKWOOD 72,

IOWA CENTRAL 47

Kirkwood — Tayana Wilson 7 1-2 16, Megan Axcell 5 0-0 13, Olivia Usher 3 5-6 12, Awal Ajak 3 1-2 9, Christmas Puok 2 2-2 8, Leah Robinson 3 3-4 10, Brianna Mensen 1 0-0 3, Arika Woolridge 0 2-2 2. Totals: 24 14-20 72.

Iowa Central — Sarah Rolling 5 4-4 15, Brittany West 2 2-2 7, Kira Ward 2 1-2 5, Rachel Toto 1 0-0 3, Avery Terwilliger 1 0-0 3, Emma O’Donoghue 4 1-1 11, Mardaeja Cross 1 0-0 2, Kryssie Okinaka 0 1-2 1, Jaylin Carter 0 0-0 0. Totals: 16 9-13 47.

Quarter scores: Iowa Central led 17-8; Kirkwood led 25-23, 54-35. Three-point goals: Kirkwood 11 (Axcell 3, Puok 2, Ajak 2, Wilson 1, Usher 1, Mensen 1, Robinson 1); Iowa Central 6 (O’Donoghue 2, West 1, Toto 1, Terwilliger 1, Rolling 1). Turnovers: Iowa Central 24, Kirkwood 8. Total fouls: Iowa Central 15, Kirkwood 16.

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