Fourth quarter push lifts CMU over Turtle Mountain in final preseason game
Anna Pyne scored 20 second half points to power CMU past Turtle Mountain Community College in NIAC preseason women's basketball action on Friday night. The first-year guard topped all offensive performers with a game-high 26 points, shooting 10 of 20 from the field and hitting on 5 of 11 from beyond the 3-point line; a career high for the rookie.
A surpise cast of heroes came up big for the Blazers in the fourth quarter, blowing open a game that saw the CMU lead reduced to five points at the end of the third as the visitors seized momentum. Carlie DeCoteau's spinning hook shot closed out the quarter for the Mighty Mikinocks, two of her team-high 14 points, pressuring the home team as they entered the final frame.
CMU would outscore their North Dakota opponents 28-6 in the fourth, led by sophomore forward Christina Klysh who also registered career-best numbers. The former Dakota Lancer came up big grabbing 14 rebounds, 7 in the final quarter, while adding 12 points on 6 of 11 shooting. Jessica Marx-Houndle was also a big part of the Blazer's fourth-quarter charge, leading all rebounders with 18.
Victims of illness and injury continue to factor into the CMU roster this preseason. Very early in Friday night's game, 2019 NIAC Most Valuable Player, Julia Schatkowsky collapsed in the key after coming down on an opponent's foot fighting for an offensive rebound. The 6'1 third-year forward joined teammates Keirra Skolnik and Carley Matkowski on Joe Di Curzio's "unavailable list" for the remainder of the game and will likely miss the next 2-6 weeks.
The Blazers are back in action on Saturday afternoon as CMU hosts the Mighty Mikinocks for a noon tipoff in the Loewen Athletic Centre. CMU begins NIAC regular season action next weekend in Ellendale, North Dakota against the Trinity Bible College Lions on Friday night.