Women’s basketball wins home opener

Story by Antonio Adgers, Writer

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The Baker University women’s basketball team defeated the Midland Warriors 62-60 in the Wildcats’ season opener Saturday in the Collins Center.

“You’ve got to feel positive about walking away 1-0,” two-time HAAC Coach of the Year Ben Lister said. “But we’ve still got some work to do.”

Although the Wildcats earned the victory, they had 20 turnovers in the game.

In the first half, the ‘Cats were down by as much as 12 points with less than 12 minutes to go. The Baker women turned it around and scrapped for a 10-point lead with less than two minutes left in the half and went into the locker room leading the Warriors 35-26.

In the second half, the Baker women maintained their lead for the duration of the game, but the Warriors began to battle back late in the action.

Senior guard Jamilah Johnson led all scorers with 17 points for the Warriors. Johnson looked to control the Warrior offense, but it was cut short by some strong defense late in the game by the Wildcats.

Baker led by two points with nine seconds to go in the game as the Warriors owned possession with an opportunity to either tie the game or win it. When the ball was in-bounded, Midland’s sophomore guard Sammi Licari could not find the space to take a quality shot. A failed three-point attempt at the buzzer solidified the Wildcats’ win.

“The first game is always the toughest,” senior forward Rashida Simpson said. “We’ve got new players and we haven’t been in a real game before this, so we had to get those first-game jitters out.”

Freshman guard Caitlin Modesett is a new face for the Wildcats, but she seemed to fit right in with the rest of the team with 10 points, two blocks and four rebounds.

Senior guard Kyrstie Ehm led the ‘Cats in scoring with 14 points of her own, and senior forward Rashida Simpson had 13 points, 7 rebounds and one block.

“We found a way to get it done on our home floor against a good team.” Lister said. “If we can continue to attack on the glass and be smarter with the basketball, we should be in good shape moving forward and hopefully continue to be successful.”

The Baker women will be away from home for their next game against Southwestern College at 6 p.m. on Tuesday in Winfield.