Sunday, November 21, 2010

Gopher women unable to transition with Dayton


Minnesota head coach Pam Borton knew the Dayton Flyers, her opponent in the Subway Classic championship Sunday afternoon at Williams Arena, would use a fast tempo that thrived on transition buckets.

Unfortunately, Dayton's players found themselves flying all over the Gophers in a 97-81 loss in front of 3,086 who braved the aftermath of a statewide ice storm.

"Are we too slow? Are we tired? I've got to watch the film, but I was very aware of that happening," Borton said.

While Minnesota (3-2, 0-0) scored more points than they did in their 76-53 win over Wisconsin-Milwaukee Saturday, the game hinged on a 6:53 stretch in the first half in which the Gophers missed 12 straight shots. Dayton (2-2, 0-0) capitalized with a 15-0 run that turned a three-point lead to 18 and varied little for the remainder of the game.

The big factor preventing a Minnesota comeback was Dayton scoring seven field goals within 10 seconds of a Gophers basket during the game.

"It's a style of play I used to use when I was at Marquette," said Dayton head coach Jim Jabir. "We were concerned about (Minnesota's) transition, but I was very happy with our pace."

Dayton junior guard Patrice Lalor scored a game-high 25 points after tallying just 18 in her first three games. Junior foward Justine Raterman added 21.

"I've been begging (Lalor) to do this since she came to school," Jabir said. "The first thing I said to her after the game was 'I expect this next game too,' and she said 'Coach, I'm trying.' "

Dayton silenced the crowd with their dominance, but one positive Gophers fans can take from their five-game homestand to open the season is Kiara Buford's scoring consistency. The junior guard led the team Sunday with 18 points, close to her average.

The hometown crowd got another scare in the first half, when Brianna Mastey injured her right leg and was taken out of the game. No updates were given as of Sunday night, but Mastey did return to the bench early in the second half.

Minnesota packs up for their first road trip of the season, playing a pair of games in the Nugget Classic at Reno, Nevada. Their opening match Friday pits them against San Diego State.

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