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Iowa Mennonite knew they had their work cut out for them starting their season off against a strong team like Mediapolis. While their nerves showed early they eventually settled in and had some offensive success.
Mediapolis eventually won the game 86-48, winning each period of the game by at least five points to grow their lead throughout the night.
The game started out with a 9-0 Mediapolis run before Suzanna Yoder drained a three-point shot for the first of her 26 points on the night.
While the Iowa Mennonite offense started to heat up, the defense had trouble stopping a potent Mediapolis fast break that constantly seemed to be finding holes in the Iowa Mennonite 2-3 zone.
“I think the biggest thing for us (to work on) is that we’re taking care of things on defense and not giving second chances or easy points in transition,” coach Kari Heusinkveld said.
After the 9-0 run Iowa Mennonite put the score to 15-7 after Alyssa Hershberger scored four straight points but from there a 11-0 Mediapolis run blew the game open to end the first quarter.
The second quarter is where Iowa Mennonite found their offense with Yoder and Hershberger starting to pick up the pace and Avery Blauvelt also put up four of her six points on the night on 3-6 shooting.
“I thought Avery Blauvelt had a really awesome game, we want to push the ball on offense and she was the first person down the court almost every time,” Heusinkveld said.
Blauvelt said she feels like this year she’ll have the opportunity and ability to score more in transition and in the post.
“So getting six points tonight was good for me and especially since I didn’t score much last year,” Blauvelt said.
She said by contributing six points, Hershberger scoring thirteen and freshman Yani Gutierrez adding three more it gives the offense a little more hope that they don’t have to rely on Yoder for too much of the offense.
“We all scored a little bit so it was nice that it wasn’t just Suzanna (Yoder) that scored today so that gives us some hope,” Blauvelt said.
Hershberger stated prior to the season that she wanted to improve her aggressiveness around the basket and showed it, getting to the line four times and going 7-8 from the free throw line.
“I think I forced myself to (get aggressive) and I ended up drawing a lot more fouls,” Hershberger said. “I personally like shooting free throws and feel confident at the line so that was helpful for me.”
The second half of the game was a lot of the same for Iowa Mennonite as Western Illinois University recruit Mackenzie Rogers scored 30 points and had 11 assists on the night for Mediapolis.
Now, with the game in the rear-view mirror Blauvelt said the game gives the team a good idea of what they need to work on going forward to succeed.
“It helped us a lot knowing what we needed to work on, putting up that many points was actually pretty good for us so going into the season we’ll feel a little bit better,” Blauvelt said.
Iowa Mennonite faced off against Lone Tree on Tuesday in another conference matchup.
Suzanna Yoder 26
Alyssa Hershberger 13
Avery Blauvelt 6
Payton Hart 9
Yani Gutierrez 1