Bison Women Rally Past Prairie View A&M 61-56 to Claim Third at Great Alaska Shootout
Release: November 21, 2012
ANCHORAGE, Alaska--Freshman Holly Johnson scored 14 points to lead four in double-figures as North Dakota State University rallied from a 17-point first half deficit to defeat Prairie View A&M University 61-56 on Wednesday, Nov. 21, to claim third place at the Carrs/Safeway Great Alaska Shootout at Sullivan Arena.
North Dakota State (3-3), which snapped a three-game losing streak, is scheduled to host the University of North Dakota (0-3) at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 30, at the Bison Sports Arena. It will be the first time since 2004 the teams have played. UND plays at South Florida on Friday.
Prairie View A&M (0-4) led at one point 30-13 with 7:13 left in the first half on a Latia Williams jumper. Williams hit 8 of 8 field goal attempts and scored 16 points to put the Panthers ahead 37-29 at halftime.
However, the Bison gradually cut into the deficit to tie the game at 46-46 on a pair of Dani DeGagne free throws with 9:52 remaining.
The teams traded baskets with Katie Birkel and Marena Whittle both scoring for NDSU before Hannah Linz drilled a three-pointer to put the Bison ahead for good at 53-50 with 4:38 left.
DeGagne and Birkel each hit key buckets down the stretch to keep Prairie View A&M at a distance. Birkel scored 11 of her 13 points in the final period and added five assists.
Birkel's two free throws with 29 seconds remaining iced the win. She was named to the all-tournament team.
Johnson, a 5-11 forward from Minot, N.D., sparked the Bison run to close out the first half with 10 of her team-high 14 points. She hit 5 of 8 field goals and grabbed five rebounds.
North Dakota State shot 50 percent from the field in the second half and finished at 44.7 percent for the game. Prairie View A&M shot 61.5 percent in the first half, but only 20 percent in the second. The Bison held a 26-25 rebounding edge.
DeGagne scored 12 points for NDSU including all six free throw attempts, while Linz added 10 points including a pair of three-pointers. Jamie Van Kirk finished with eight points and four assists.
Williams led the Panthers with a game-high 20 points and eight rebounds, while Kiara Etienne added 11 points. Larissa Scott had eight points and nine rebounds.
The 17-point comeback win is the largest since NDSU rallied from a 15-point deficit to defeat Western Illinois 46-43 on March 9, 2009, in the opening round of the Summit League tournament.
It was the first Shootout appearances for both teams in the 33-year history of the women’s tournament.
2012 Carrs/Safeway Great Alaska Shootout
Women’s All-Tournament Team
Katie Birkel, North Dakota State
Kylie Burns, Alaska Anchorage
Alysa Horn, Alaska Anchorage
Franny Vaaulu, Utah State
Latia Williams, Prairie View A&M
Most Outstanding Player: Devyn Christensen, Utah State