Not Fixin' It In MIAC Opener

Kirstin Simmons (R) and Mira Ellefson combined for 25 points and helped the Cobbers outrebound Hamline 39-25 in their conference-opening win.
Kirstin Simmons (R) and Mira Ellefson combined for 25 points and helped the Cobbers outrebound Hamline 39-25 in their conference-opening win.

STORY LINE: Concordia heeded the old cliché "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" as they used their strong inside game for the second straight contest to come away with a 63-50 win at Hamline. The Cobbers outrebounded the Pipers 39-25 and held a 39-28 edge in points in the paint to earn the victory in the conference opener for both teams.

RECORDS: Concordia wins for the third time in the last four games and ends the trend of the loss-win-loss-win rollercoaster. The Cobbers are now 3-2 overall. Hamline has their 1-game win streak stopped. HU is now 4-3 in all games.

KEY STRETCH: The key stretch in the game came at the end of the first quarter and start of the second. Concordia went on a 5-0 run with just over 1-minute to play in the opening period after the game was tied at 12-12. CC then went on a 9-2 streak to start the second to push the lead to 12 points at 26-14. The Cobbers would never trail after that point and wouldn't let Hamline get to within eight points in the final two quarters of play.       

BIGS ARE BIG: Concordia's "big" trio of Kirstin Simmons, Mira Ellefson and Elizabeth Birkemeyer combined for 37 of the team's 63 points. They were also three of the four Cobber players to finish in double figures in scoring for the game.   

RED STORM RISING: The play of senior Kirstin Simmons has been a big factor in the strong inside game of the Cobbers the past two games. Four days after scoring a career-high 17 points against St. Ben's in a non-conference game, Simmons recorded the second double-double of her career. She put up 12 points and tied her career high in rebounds with 11 – which included six offensive boards. Simmons leads the Cobbers in rebounding with an 8.0 rpg average which is tied for eighth in the MIAC.

E's EXCEL: Mira Ellefson and Elizabeth Birkemeyer both had at least a dozen points in the win. Ellefson was one of two CC players with 13 points and has now put up a double-digit scoring total in four straight games. She leads Concordia in scoring with a 14.2 ppg average. Birkemeyer came off the bench to score a career-high 12 points. She went 4-for-5 from the field.

GRACE GRABS ANOTHER DOUBLE-DIGIT: Senior Grace Wolhowe was the final member of the Cobbers to score at least 10 points. She tied Ellefson with a team-high 13 points as she went 5-for-7 from the field. Wolhowe has scored in double figures in all but one game this year and is second on the team in scoring with a 13.4 ppg average.   
              
UP NEXT: Concordia will start the second half of their 4-game road trip when they play at St. Mary's on Wednesday, Dec. 5 at 5 p.m. The Cardinals are 4-2 on the year and won their MIAC opener on Saturday with a 78-57 win at Carleton.