UND Defeats Omaha in Tight Game

Maeve Hushman, Sports Reporter

The University of North Dakota defeated the University of Nebraska Omaha 65-63 in a contentious conference game on Thursday, January 12th that had everyone in the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center on the edge of their seats. The game was back in fourth with lots of physicality and whistles blown. With that win, UND snapped their 3-game losing streak and maintained their perfect 8-0 home record. Kacie Borowicz scored to win the game with only 15 seconds left.  

The game was relatively low scoring for UND, which usually averages 71.9 points per game. However, Head Coach Mallory Bernhard emphasized defense going into their games against Omaha and Denver.  

“We talked about defense, defense, defense. It is going to be defense for us this week. We have got to get stops,” Coach Bernhard said of the team preparation for this game in Wednesday’s pre-game press conference “We have got to get back to who we were and locking teams down a little bit more.”  

The team held up defensively holding Omaha, which averages 67.7 points per game, to only 63 points.  

“Tonight, we made some huge defensive stops down the stretch that gave us that opportunity to Kacie that shot and then ultimately sealed the win for us,” graduate student Claire Orth said in the post-game press conference.  

Fellow graduate student Juliet Gordon echoed the comments made by Ortho. “I think those last two minutes where we were not necessarily scoring or executing on offense but just came up on defense making good plays,” Gordon said.   

This game was also a breakout game for a couple of players, mainly freshmen Miranda Vanderwal and Rakiyah Beal. While Vanderwal only scored two points in the game, she played 17 minutes and was instrumental in the final steal that helped win the game. 

Beal played 13 minutes and scored 10 points, the second highest of any UND player in that game. That 10 points included two three-point shots.  

When asked what kind of player she is, Beal replied, “I like to think I do a little bit of everything, I am pretty athletic.” However, she did add that past coaches have identified her as a 3-point shooter, which is what she did in part against Omaha.  

The University of North Dakota looks to extend their perfect home record against another Summit League team, University of Denver, on Saturday, January 14th. Hopefully, they can ride the momentum from this win and continue their focus on defense to stay undefeated in the Betty.  

 

Maeve Hushman is a Dakota Student Reporter. She can be reached at [email protected]