Second Half Blues: Lady Jays def. by RCTC 73-53 – The Globe

ROCHESTER — The Minnesota West Lady Jays finished second in the NJCAA DIII women’s basketball national tournament after losing 73-53 to hosts Rochester Community and Technical College Yellowjackets on Saturday.

The Lady Jays started the game well against the team who have now given them three of their five losses, going shot for shot with the Yellowjackets.

The Lady Jays took their first lead of the game 14-13, 3:56 in the first period after a layup by Hattie DeVries.

After forcing a steal in the final five seconds, Brooklyn Scheitel-Taylor pulled off a go-ahead layup to give the Lady Jays a 19-17 lead after a quarter of basketball.

The second quarter followed a similar pattern. The Lady Jays would take the lead and the Yellowjackets would end the game. The Lady Jays worked magic on the buzzer, however, as Olivia Hayenga tipped into a basket before the buzzer to put her team back up 34-32 at the break.

But then everything went south for Minnesota West. The Lady Jays came out of halftime timidly – much like their game against Owens yesterday. After a quick 4-0 scoring run by the Yellowjackets, Lady Jays coach Rosalie Hayenga-Hostikka took time out to calm her side.

Rochester’s intensity never let up. The press defenses the Lady Jays were able to break through in the first half now left them error prone and fearful. The goal run grew to 15:2 for the Yellowjackets.

“I can not explain. I think we just had a bad start, we turned the ball on the first possession and then all of a sudden it was back in that timid mode,” said Hayenga-Hostikka. “They didn’t really do much differently. We just got hesitant and then we got scared to attack, made weak passes and that gave them all the momentum in the world.”

The Lady Jays averaged a little under 20 points per quarter in the domestic tournament and averaged just 19 points throughout the second half.

“When things started to go bad, I think we were at that breaking point of fatigue, I don’t know,” said Hayenga-Hostikka of her team, who played a fourth game in as many days. “We played 14 quarters of incredible basketball this week. It’s just unfortunate the last two, we didn’t play like we’ve been playing all week.”

The Lady Jays got frustrated in the second half. Late in the first half, Olivia Hayenga was mistakenly ruled an over-and-back injury due to the striping of the pitch. Frustration boiled over when coach Hayenga-Hostikka was given a technical foul after allowing an official to give her opinion on a sequence in which Hayenga was denied free throws on a potential shooting foul and Scheitel-Taylor was called on the subsequent grab switch.

Olivia Hayenga (20) jumps for a layup in Saturday’s NJCAA DIII championship game against RCTC.

Dominic Burns/The Globe

The Lady Jays had 32 turnovers. The Yellowjackets had 19 turnovers. The Lady Jays had four free throws while RCTC had 16.

The Yellowjackets’ leading scorer with 31 points was Olivia Christianson, the most valuable player of the tournament. Christianson scored 14 points in the first half and was 3-of-8 from 3-point range.

The top scorer for the Lady Jays was Tia Murray with 15. Hayenga had 13, Husiman had eight, Scheitel-Tayor had seven and Dannyn Peterson had six.

Murray and Hayenga were both recognized as members of the All-Tournament Team.

Minnesota West had three sophomores who competed in back-to-back national tournaments — Huisman, Murray, and Peterson.

“These sophomores — I can’t tell them enough how proud I am and the mark they left on Lady Jay’s basketball,” Hayenga-Hostikka said. “Nobody has ever done a national tournament (appearances) in a row. You can’t replace them, no matter what recruit class you are, you can’t replace those three.”

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Tia Murray scores a 3-point shot in Saturday’s NJCAA DIII Women’s Basketball Championship game against RCTC.

Dominic Burns/The Globe

“Tia will go on and have a great career,” said Hayenga-Hostikka. “Where she started and where she’s come to – it’s incredible. More than that – not just her basketball game, but the person she has become and the teammate and leader. That’s why I’m so proud of her.”

“Dannyn is the toughest kid I’ve ever coached,” said Hayenga-Hostikka. “Your body is just a disaster. I don’t know any other kid who would have played with all the injuries she had. would you know She takes the charge, and I mean hustle. This year she could not score as many goals. She did a lot of dirty work and she was fine with it.”

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Madisyn Huisman (5) looks to fit in the corner in Saturday’s championship game against RCTC.

Dominic Burns/The Globe

“Madisyn – her filming and just the kind of person she is? You can’t replace that,” said Hayenga-Hostikka. “It’s amazing how good she’s become as a basketball player. I said it in there (locker room) ‘I want to start crying, and it’s not because we lost, but I felt sad because it’s over.'”

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Left to right: Dannyn Peterson, Tia Murray, Dasia Potter, Olivia Hayenga, Madisyn Huisman, Brooklyn Scheitel-Taylor, Hattie DeVries, Adurey Drapeau, Wiconi UsesArrow.

Dominic Burns/The Globe

Minnesota West 19 34 45 53

RCTC 17 32 56 73

MINNESOTA WEST (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) Scheitel Taylor 0-3-1-7, Huisman 1-2-1-8, Hayenga 3-2-0-13, Murray 1-6-0-15, Peterson 0-3-0-6, DeVries 0-2-0-4. TOTAL 5-18-2-53.

RCTC (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) Ruzek 1-2-3-10, miles 2-5-0-16, Christianson 3-8-6-31. Sikkink 0-1-1-3, James 0-5-2-12, Andring 0-0-1-1. TOTAL 6-21-13-73.


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