Women’s basketball secures victory against UW-Platteville in the fourth quarter

The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire women’s basketball team had its first game of the semester against the University of Wisconsin-Platteville and outmatched them 65-59

Allison Hinrichs

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Photo by Bill Hoepner from blugolds.com

The UW-Eau Claire women’s basketball took victory from UW-Platteville last Wednesday.

Taking place in Zorn Arena, the Blugolds followed close behind the Pioneers 50-49 before making a comeback in the fourth quarter. 

The game began with a five-point lead for the Blugolds due to a layup by Bailey Reardon, a fourth-year student from River Falls, Wisconsin, and a 3-pointer score from Jessie Ruden, a fourth-year student from Rochester, Minnesota. 

The Blugolds kept the Pioneers at bay until the final few minutes of the quarter when UW-Platteville pulled ahead, leading by one point. 

With only 2:03 left in the first quarter, Kylie Mogen, a fourth-year student from Menomonie, Wisconsin, performed a layup and brought the Blugolds ahead of the Pioneers 16-15.

 In the second period, UW-Platteville and UW-Eau Claire swapped the lead back and forth early on. Ruden earned the Blugolds the biggest lead with four points in the final 7 minutes, boosting UW-Eau Claire to the lead 26-22. 

With only 2:44 to go, Tyra Boettcher, a fourth-year student from Menomonie, Wisconsin, scored a 3-pointer. With a score of 34-31, the Pioneers got an advantage and scored three points before the buzzer.

The strongest lead UW-Platteville gained in the third quarter was five points before UW-Eau Claire pushed back. Courtney Crouch, a fourth-year student from White Bear Lake, Minnesota, performed back-to-back layups alongside Reardan, earning them a score of 49-46 with 2:02 minutes remaining on the clock. In a final strike, UW-Platteville scored an additional four points making it the last score of the quarter.

Crouch said her biggest takeaway from the game against UW-Platteville was that the team needs to continue to come together. 

“We had been on a three-day losing streak and our team just really wanted that win,” Crouch said. “We do so well when we play off each other and feed off each other’s energy.

The fourth quarter began with a Pioneer lead of 50-49. The game was tied 53-53 at the 6:15 mark when Reardan scored a layup which confirmed the Blugold lead for the rest of the quarter. A second layup by Reardan secured the game for good putting the Blugolds ahead 61-55.

By the close of the game, Ruden scored 19 points and Reardan scored an additional 17 points and six rebounds. Boettcher earned an additional 12 points and six rebounds while Mogen racked in another 4 points.

Although the regular season is coming to an end, there is still plenty of basketball ahead for UW-Eau Claire.

“We really have a culture, discipline and style that we believe in each year,” Tonja Englund, UW-Eau Claire women’s basketball coach, said. “We have basically the same team that won the conference tournament championship last year and we have to continue to believe in our process because that process wins championships.

After securing victory, the Blugolds recognized the five seniors on the team in a post-game ceremony. The seniors included: Boetcher, Crouch, Mogen, Reardan and Ruden.

“We don’t have a ton of time left in the season, it’s crunch time,” Crouch said. “I am looking forward to playing our best basketball in our most critical time which is now.”

Hinrichs can be reached @[email protected]