Cold shooting dooms Central women’s basketball team

Central College

Central College

PELLA — Plagued by a low shooting percentage, the Central College women’s basketball squad fell to Simpson College, 58-35, Wednesday night.

The Dutch (9-7 overall, 1-4 conference) were down by 11 points at the half, but the team came within eight points of the Storm (9-7 overall, 4-1 conference) after a Courtney Kelderman (guard, senior, Pella) 3-pointer with 18:23 minutes left in regulation. However, Central was never able to gain the lead in the second half.

“I thought we played well defensively,” said coach Chelsea Petersen. “We held Simpson to 58 points, and any time we hold a team to under 60 points, we can find ourselves in a position to win. Unfortunately, we didn’t score the ball enough to claim that win.”

The Dutch shot a frigid 24 percent from the field for the game while Simpson netted 40.4 percent of its attempts.

“The team prepared well for zone defense over the last few practices,” Petersen said. “The execution was there, but we didn’t hit our open shots.

“We got out to a very early lead with a lot of energy,” she said. “But from that point on, we didn’t handle the ups and downs of the game very well.”

Kelderman led the team with nine points. Guard Rachel Evans (junior, Fort Dodge) followed with seven points, six rebounds and three assists. Guards Kenzie Vander Molen (junior, Pella) and Emily Neff (freshman, Cedar Falls) each scored six points. Vander Molen pulled down a team-high seven rebounds. Neff also had two assists.

“Emily had a very strong game,” said Petersen. “She got to the rim, took care of the ball and rebounded well.”

Central travels to Storm Lake Saturday to face off against Buena Vista University (6-9 overall, 0-4 conference). Tipoff is slated for 2 p.m.

“We will continue to learn and grow together,” said Petersen. “We will get better and be ready for Buena Vista this weekend.”

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