Minnesota women’s basketball (15-11, 5-10 B1G) was tripped up on the road at Michigan State (13-12, 6-8) Monday night, 66-54.
Freshman Jasmine Powell continued her stellar play with a team-high 15 points. It was her ninth straight game in double figures and her 15th overall on the year. Powell added four rebounds, two steals and an assist.
Three other Gophers — seniors Masha Adashchyk and Jasmine Brunson and freshman Sara Scalia — all had eight points, while senior Taiye Bello was the team’s top rebounder with eight boards on the night.
It was a tight first quarter as neither team led by more than three, and the frame featured four lead changes and two ties. The Spartans held a slight 14-12 lead after the first 10 minutes and continued to maintain the advantage until the Gophers pulled ahead, 23-22, thanks to a 3-pointer from junior Gadiva Hubbard.
Minnesota had its first lead since 9-8, but Michigan State countered with a 9-0 and would not trail the rest of the way.
Back-to-back baskets from Powell marked the final four points of the first half, cutting the MSU lead to 31-27 at intermission. Unfortunately, the Spartans scored the first five points of the third quarter and 11 of the first 14 to push their lead into double digits.
Michigan State led 50-38 with under two minutes to go in the third quarter but the Gophers ended the frame on a small 7-2 run to trail by seven, 52-45, heading to the fourth.
A 3-pointer from MSU’s Julia Ayrault, who finished with 14 points off the bench, opened the scoring in the fourth and got its lead back to 10, while Powell answered with a field goal and Brunson hit a free throw to get it back to seven with 8:57 to play in the game. That would be as close as Minnesota would get the rest of the way.
Senior Kehinde Bello scored her second bucket of the night to make it an eight-point contest with 6:19 remaining, but Michigan State, who got a game-high 16 points and 10 rebounds from Nia Clouden, scored the next six over a span of nearly three and a half minutes to put the game away.
After two straight games on the road, Minnesota is back at Williams Arena Saturday as it hosts Indiana at 5 p.m.
(info and photo courtesy of Gopher Sports)