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Morning Sun
  • Pitt State women take on Minnesota-Duluth in Rolla

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  • The Pittsburg State women's hoops team seems to be taking a tour of potential playoff opponent schools for the Pitt State football team, between Henderson State on Thursday and Minnesota-Duluth on Saturday (10:30 a.m. start). The Gorillas are playing the Bulldogs as part of the Missouri S&T Tournament. Minnesota-Duluth opened its season Friday against the host and Pitt State won its home opener 76-56 over Henderson State. "Kind of a hard team to play," Pitt State head coach Lane Lord said of Henderson State. "Not a typical MIAA team that has size and where they run a lot of double-screens for shooters and a lot of high-low action. It was more of a really athletic team that was really hard to guard, to tell the truth, but I thought we did a great job as a team playing team defense. Saw some signs of a pretty good basketball team." The Gorilla bench outscored the Reddies 45-9, sparked by a career-high 28 points by junior guard Morgan Westhoff. The bench started a 14-3 run early in the first half after Lord pulled four starters and called on Brigit Hesser, Alex Muff, Hailey Roderique and Westhoff to complement Lizzy Jeronimus. "Lizzy's Lizzy, she's going to be a stud every night," Lord said. "She struggled just a tad but still did a lot of great things for us. Morgan's been probably, beside Lizzy, she's been our best player this year. She's been outstanding. She gives us a great lift. We call her 'The Microwave.' She comes in off the bench, she heats it up and she's been staying pretty hot. The microwave's still cooking right now. We'll probably start her the next game. We've got to have better starts to the game." Pitt State held its own on the glass with an aggressive Henderson State, both teams grabbing 44 boards. "People don't really understand this . . . they think you can just block out," Lord said. "When you're that athletic, sometimes blocking out sounds good in theory. They can just go right around you. You really have to block out and go pursue the basketball. Their last game, they had 32 offensive rebounds, their season opener. They're just good athletes, a lot of them can jump and go get the ball. "I thought we did a decent job . . . 19 offensive rebounds is way too many. We only had three offensive rebounds at half and I thought we did a better job in the second half of getting 10 offensive rebounds. I thought Y'Cedria (Devers) really played well for us. She was really hustling, getting boards and made some steals." Jeronimus leads the 2-2 Gorillas with 19.5 points, 7.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game. Westhoff's two-game tear against Indianapolis and Henderson State increased her scoring average to 16.5 and she's shooting 56.1 percent (23-41) from the floor and 54.8 percent (17-31) from 3-point land. Pitt State and Minnesota-Duluth have no previous meetings. The Bulldogs were 14-13 last season.

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