The Iowa Wesleyan women?s basketball team faced off against Nebraska Wesleyan on the road in their final game of 2017. After a strong first half, Iowa Wesleyan was unable to sustain the effort and fell 95-69 to the Prairie Wolves in the non-conference match-up.
Iowa Wesleyan opened the first quarter on fire, not missing from behind the arc in their first three possessions and building a 9-0 lead over Nebraska Wesleyan. The lead did not last long as the Prairie Wolves were able to tie the game up after three straight turnovers and a foul by the Tigers. Josie Zerrusen scored 13 of her 17 points in the first quarter, and it was a battle for the advantage throughout the remainder of the quarter. After several lead changes, the first period ended with the score tied at 28-28.
The Tigers continued to stay with the Prairie Wolves to start the second quarter. There were seven lead changes in the first six minutes of play in the second period. Nebraska Wesleyan took a 38-37 lead over IW with 5:43 left in the first half, and they would build a 10-point lead to end the half.
LaStella Slack scored the first basket of the second half to bring the score to 42-50. The Tiger offense kept the momentum going to start the third, cutting the Prairie Wolves lead to three points after a three-pointer by Allie Massner. Nebraska Wesleyan hit back to back three-pointers and got a jumper to fall to go up by 11 with 6:37 left in the quarter. Allie Massner made a layup to bring the Tigers within nine,but the Prairie Wolves would go on a run and not look back. Iowa Wesleyan ended the quarter with turnovers on three possessions, and trailed 71-53.
Turnovers continued to plague the Tigers in the fourth quarter. They had three turnovers in four possessions, and Nebraska Wesleyan took advantage. Iowa Wesleyan?s first points of the fourth quarter came from a layup by LaStella Slack with just under seven minutes remaining. The Tigers got back to back three-pointers from Caitlyn Welch and Allie Massner with under four and a half minutes left to play, but it was not enough as the Prairie Wolves went on to win 95-69.
Josie Zerrusen finished with a team high 17 points off of 6-11 shooting from the field and 4-7 shooting from behind the arc. Allie Massner sank three three-pointers for the Tigers and was 5-11 from the field to add 13 points in the loss. Darby Massner grabbed a team high six rebounds for the Tigers.
Iowa Wesleyan heads into the break with a 1-10 overall record and a 1-2 SLIAC record. They will return to action on January 3, when they take on Webster University at 6 p.m. in St. Louis, Mo.