Trolls Fall In NCCAA Region Championship Game

Playing for the right to advance to the NCCAA national tournament, Trinity travelled to Greenville University for the North Central Region Championship. The No. 3 seeded Trolls could not take down the No. 1 seeded Panthers and ended in a 73-61 loss. Trinity led through the first quarter, but faltered in the second period to trail by nine at the half. They closed the gap in the third period and were within one point. In the late part of the final quarter Trinity lost ground and could not make up the difference as the game ended. The Trolls end their season with a 17-17 record.

The game had a slow start as each team found their rhythm and got in the flow of the game. Three minutes into the quarter the score was only 5-5. The Trolls rolled off the next five points to take the lead which they held until the end of the quarter at 19-15.

The lead swung into Greenville’s favor in the second period as Trinity scored only six points in the period.  Leading 23-22 with seven minutes to play, they did not score again until Jessica Bianchi hit two free throws in the final seconds of the quarter. Greenville scored 12 unanswered points in that final seven minutes to take 34-25 lead at the half.

In the opening minutes of the second period Trinity fall behind by double digits, but the Trolls had a six point run to close the gap to 39-35 with four minutes left. They continued to apply pressure and by the end of the quarter they were within one point at 45-44.

The score was tied twice in the early part of the fourth quarter and on a lay-up by Bianchi with five minutes left he Trolls took a brief lead at 57-55. Greenville responded with an 8-to-0 run to go ahead by seven with three minutes left.  With under a minute to play a jumper by Celina Wanta put the team to within five points. In the final minute Greenville did what they needed to do at the line while Trinity could not get their shots to fall.

For the game the Trolls ended with a .352 field goal percentage, a .188 three-point percentage, and a .875 free throw percentage. Greenville shot .407 percent from the field, .348 percent from the arc, and .714 percent from the line.  Trinity had 38 rebounds and Greenville had 47.  Wanta led the Trolls with 15 points, six rebounds, and four steals. Bianchi added 13 points, five assists, and four steals. Bethany Jansma chipped in 10 points and Kelsie Foster was the high rebounder with eight.