MUNSTER | Down by as many as eight points in the second half, Munster stuck with the same lineup that had struggled up to that point.
Head coach Matt Backs was rewarded with an 11-2 rally that propelled the Mustangs to their first win of the year, a 39-36 victory over Crown Point.
Senior Anika Gasich and sophomore Jen Cole led the Mustangs with 13 and 10 points, respectively.
Gasich suffered what appeared to be a serious injury to her left knee with 1:58 remaining in the game and left the court. Behind Cole, the Mustangs didn’t miss a beat. She dropped in a pair of free throws with 3.1 seconds left to seal the win.
Ice cold shooting plagued both teams in the first half. The Bulldogs were just 6-for-29, while the Mustangs were 3-for-19.
After losing six seniors to graduation, Crown Point head coach Anne Equihua preached patience to her young team.
“In order for us to be effective on offense, we need five or six passes on every possession,” Equihua said. “We have to be patient with the ball.”
The Bulldogs kept the ball in motion down the court, hitting the open player on almost every possession. Only poor shooting kept them from a large lead in the first half.
“When teams press us, we can’t speed up and get out of our game,” Equihua said. “Tonight, we did a good job of playing the way we need to on offense.”
Munster head coach Matt Backs was hoping his Mustangs could take advantage of opportunities presented by the defense during the game.
“(In Friday's 61-46 loss to Chesterton) we had several opportunities but didn’t take advantage,” Backs said. “When we get turnovers and loose balls, we have to take advantage of it.”
In the first half, the Mustangs did little to create any opportunities. They did not press, and only forced three turnovers.
“We put out a great effort as a team,” Backs said. “The girls put their heart into it. We’re not short on effort, execution.”