LEWISTON - The Lewis-Clark State Women's Basketball team took to the court Friday afternoon for the first time since March 10 in the opening contest of the Carroll Thanksgiving Classic. The Warriors faced Montana State-Northern and shot over 43 percent from the field, including 41.7 percent from 3-point range, to earn a hard-fought 75-66 victory.
MSUN got on the board first with back-to-back 3s to take a 6-0 lead. A 3 from Abby Farmer on an assist from Peyton Souvenir got LC State back in the game, and a triple by Edmiston at 6:19 brought the Warriors within two at 8-6. Farmer put the Warriors in front with the team's third 3-pointer of the game at 5:01, then again with a layup to make it 11-10 in favor of the Warriors.
Rachel Schroeder added to the 3-point party at 2:50 to grow the advantage to 14-10, and a basket from Edmiston off an offensive rebound made it 16-12. LC State totaled five 3s in the first quarter and held a 21-16 advantage.
"We got out to a really slow start and Northern came out on fire," Head Coach Brian Orr explained. "Some of that was because our matchup zone was horrible. We changed defenses and all of a sudden our offense got going."
Johnson opened the second frame with a basket to keep the Warrior run going, but the Skylights fought back to cut the LC lead to 23-22 by 7:36. A deep 3 by Edmiston pushed the lead back out to 26-22 just under the seven-minute mark, and Johnson followed with a floater to make it a five-point run. MSUN tied the game 28-28 at 4:45, but buckets by Kiara Burlage and Edmiston kept the Warriors in the mix.
The Skylights matched the LC State pace from behind the 3-point line as the lead changed hands nearly every possession. Back-to-back buckets by Burlage and Hannah Broyles pushed the Warrior advantage to 39-36, and a foul shot by Johnson made it five straight points. Farmer found Burlage under the basket with 25 seconds to play in the half, and LC State went to the locker room with a 42-38 lead.
"Jansen had a really good first half, and I thought Abby Farmer played her best overall game as a Warrior," Orr said. "She was a difference maker in the end."
Edmiston led the Warriors in the first half with 13 points, including a 3-for-3 performance from behind the 3-point line. Farmer, Johnson and Burlage each added eight points in the half and Johnson grabbed six boards.
The Skylights opened the scoring in the third quarter and tied the game 42-42 at 7:43. Johnson gave LC State back the lead on an assist from Souvenir, and a 3 from Burlage made it 47-42. A triple by Farmer made it an 8-0 Warrior run with a 50-42 lead at the six-minute mark.
Burlage, Edmiston and Heidi Sellmann added on to make it a 14-point run. Souvenir answered an MSUN basket with a 3 to make it 59-54 with under a minute left in the quarter and free throws by Sellmann made it 61-44 at the end of the frame. LC State held MSUN to just six points in the quarter.
The Warriors cruised through the fourth quarter, with Madeline Weaver joining the 3-point party. Six LC State played drained a 3 as the Warriors took the first game of the season 75-66.
Edmiston led all scorers with 17 points. Both Edmiston and Farmer had three 3-pointers as part of the team's 10. Burlage added 16 points and Farmer scored 15. Johnson notched a double-double with 13 rebounds and 12 points. Souvenir tied a career-high with 10 assists.
"Abbie Johnson really stepped up today and she played tremendous defense and she was a Warrior on the boards," Orr said. "Peyton kept us together all day and was finding open teammates all game long. We got tired in the second half and are still trying to get back into shape. This was a good win for the first game of the season."
The Warriors shot 43.6 percent from the field and 41.7 percent from behind the line. They drained 10 3s in total and went 11-for-14 from the free throw line. LC State also had nine steals in the contest.
The LC State women will return to the court tomorrow afternoon (Saturday, November 28) to face host Number 20 Carroll at 1:00pm PT. The game will be streamed through Carroll's YouTube channel.