Autumn On The Spot

Sophomore Bailee Larson looks to make a pass in the second half of the Cobbers' win over St. Ben's. She had a career-high 15 rebounds in the game.
Sophomore Bailee Larson looks to make a pass in the second half of the Cobbers' win over St. Ben's. She had a career-high 15 rebounds in the game.

MOORHEAD, Minn. (1/22/20)--- Autumn Thompson made her case to change the old nickname of "Johnny on the spot" to "Autumn on the spot" as she was in the right place at the right time to convert on a layup in the final seconds of the fourth quarter and help Concordia beat St. Benedict 53-52.

Thompson banked home a put-back layup from the left side of the basket to give the Cobbers the 1-point advantage with 5-seconds left and then the defense pressured the Bennies into a taking a tough last-second shot to preserve the victory.

The win is the third in the last four league games for the Cobbers. Concordia is now 7-8 overall and 5-5 in the MIAC. CC is currently alone in sixth place in the league standings. St. Benedict has their 2-game win streak come to an end and drops to 8-8 in all games and 5-6 in the MIAC.

The game was a back-and-forth affair that featured 19 lead changes and four tie scores. The microcosm of the first half came in the final two minutes of the second quarter. St. Ben's took their largest lead of the game at 20-14 but then Cobber freshman Emily Beseman scored seven straight points to give Concordia a 21-20 lead.  The Bennies then scored the last six points of the half, including a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to take a 26-21 lead into the halftime break.

The Cobbers scored the first eight points of the second half to retake a 3-point lead and the back-and-forth battle was set for the remainder of the game.

Neither team had more than a 3-point lead in the final quarter of play which had 10 lead changes and three tie scores.

St. Ben's took a 1-point lead at 52-51 with 1:26 left in regulation. Concordia then had a turnover and the Bennies used the entire shot clock before missing a jumper with 16-seconds left which set up the game-winning rebound and layup from Thompson.

Neither team was able to find their shooting touch in the game with both teams shooting under 38.0% from the field and 31.0% from outside the arc.

Concordia ended the game by shooting 37.5% (21-for-56) from the floor and 20.0% (3-for-15) from 3-point range. St. Ben's had a better shooting percentage from outside the arc, making 30.0% (6-for-20) of their shots from distance. They shot 30.2% (19-for-63) from the floor.

Both teams made eight free throws in the game.

The majority of the game was played around the basket. The teams combined for 79 rebounds and 58 points in the paint. The Cobbers led in both categories. CC outrebounded the Bennies 46-33 and had a 34-24 edge in points in the paint.

Sophomore Bailee Larson had a monster game for Concordia. She came down with a career-high 15 rebounds and also scored nine points. She is the first CC player to have at least 15 rebounds in a game since Kirstin Simmons had 16 boards against Carleton on Feb. 13 of last season.

Concordia had three players with double-digit scoring totals. Beseman had a game-high 12 points while Thompson finished with 11 points and Mary Sem had 10 points. Sem also added eight rebounds which ties her season high. Sem has also scored in double figures in 12 of the team's 15 games this year.

Thompson has 11 games with at least 10 points and it was Beseman's ninth double-digit scoring game.

INSIDE STAT INFO: The 46 rebounds by the Cobbers marks the fourth time this season they have had at least 45 boards in a game. Concordia had 37 defensive rebounds in the game which is a season high and the most since the 2017 season when they also had 37 defensive boards against the University of the Ozarks on Nov. 11, 2016.    

BLACKJACK: Emily Beseman went 3-for-3 from the free throw line and extended her consecutive made free throw streak to 21. She is now shooting 96.2% (25-for-26) from the foul line in MIAC games which continues to lead the MIAC. She is converting 80.3% of her foul shots for the entire season which is second best in the MIAC.   

WE LIKE WEDNESDAY: Concordia has now won four straight games on Wednesday nights. CC is now 4-1 on the season in games played on Hump Day.      

UP NEXT: Concordia will take their 2-game win streak to Minneapolis when the play at Augsburg on Saturday, Jan. 25 at 3 p.m. The Auggies are 13-3 overall and 9-2 in the MIAC which is tied for second place in the league standings.