Men’s & women’s basketball issue payback to Buena Vista

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by Hunter Hillygus & Erich Bogner, Sports Reporters

INDIANOLA, Iowa – Simpson got payback on Wednesday when it avenged conference opening losses to Buena Vista back in January with wins from both the women’s and men’s teams.

Women’s Game: Simpson 71 (15-9, 8-5), Buena Vista (14-10, 8-5)

It wasn’t pretty, but it’s what the Storm needed. A win.

The Simpson women (15-9, 8-5) closed out it’s regular season home schedule with a gritty, grind it out win over Buena Vista (14-10, 8-5), 71-64 on the back of sophomore Noreen Morrow’s double-double.

“I was very proud of them, we could have folded and we didn’t. That’s a very good BV team and I thought we made plays when we had to. It wasn’t pretty, but we got the job done,” said head coach Brian Niemuth.

The Storm hopped out to an early double digit lead in the first quarter, scoring almost at will, while playing stifling defense en route to a 21-7 lead at the end of one.

Buena Vista found its rhythm in the second quarter using their quickness and length down low in the form of Jordan Tynes and Jasmyn Flynn-Graves, cutting the Storm lead to single digits with 2 minutes left in the half. Simpson’s defense held it’s ground, taking a 34-27 lead into halftime. Simpson held the Beavers to 30 percent shooting in the half and just nine percent from three.

The third quarter picked up right where the second one ended, with the Beavers coming out swinging. Converting off of multiple Simpson turnovers, Buena Vista crawled their way back into the game, getting within one point of the lead with eight minutes left.

The Storm bended, but would not break. The Beavers took a 51-50 lead in the fourth, but that’s the largest lead they could muster. Simpson used late three pointers from Morgan Mauro and offensive rebounds and free throws from Noreen Morrow to keep the Beavers at bay and pull out the win.

Three Storm players scored in double figures led by Morrow’s 14 points, followed by Mauro’s 11 and Mackenzie Haupt’s 10. Morrow and Britney Boland led the Storm in rebounding with 12 a piece. Maddie Bosworth was the leading distributer for the Storm, dishing out four assists.

With this win the Storm are now in a three-way tie for third place in the IIAC with Buena Vista and Wartburg. The Storm could move into second place Saturday with a win against the current holder of second place, Loras. For the Storm to move into sole possession of second place, Wartburg and Buena Vista both need to lose.

Simpson won their first matchup with Loras in January, 81-53. Tip-off is slated for 2 p.m.

Men’s Game: Simpson 74 (15-9, 8-5), Buena Vista (4-9, 9-15)

At the start of the season, head coach Brad Bjorkgren mentioned that his primary goal was to make the Iowa Conference Tournament. The Simpson men’s basketball team is now not only in line to make the conference tournament, it is also on the cusp of a first round bye after a dominating 74-57 win over Buena Vista on Wednesday night at Cowles Fieldhouse.

Junior guard Ryan Skaar made his hundredth career three pointer in this game. Skaar said, “It feels pretty good. Obviously you gotta make every shot and that’s my role. It’s nice to hit a few milestones along the way. Shout out to Dillon on the pass.”

Dillon Gretzky led scorers with 14 and nine rebounds, and was helped by DJ Dafney, Ryan Skaar, and Jamie Montgomery all with 11. Overall the Storm had 11 three-pointers, holding Buena Vista to only 5 of 23 from beyond the arc.

Montgomery had all 11 of his points in the first half. “When I get shots open I let them fly and when they go in it feels good.” Montgomery said. The 11 points were a career high for Montgomery.

Simpson holds a one game edge on Loras, Wartburg and Central, all of which are 7-6 in the conference with one game remaining in the regular season. The Storm travel to Dubuque to face the Duhawks at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 20.