By Tommy McGowan, UWEC Sports Information
ST. PAUL, Minn. (blugolds.com) - The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire women's basketball team lost a road trek to Bethel University Tuesday night, 77-54.
A poor shooting first quarter left the Blugolds down early, 24-9. However, they put together a very strong second. They shot 6-12 from the field during the period, outscoring the Royals 21-19. Hallee Hoeppner (Sr.-Winona, MN) led the offense, putting up nine points during the quarter.
Down 43-30 at halftime, Eau Claire couldn't keep the good shooting up into the third quarter. They went 0-4 from three-point, while Bethel would go 4-8, allowing them to build onto their lead.
A strong defensive showing from the Blugolds in the fourth helped them close the gap, but not quite enough. They would allow just eight points in the final period, holding Bethel to 3-13 shooting. Hoeppner added another bucket to finish the night with 17 points in total, while Kelsey Bakken (Sr.-Marshall, MN) would also add eight points.
Beyond Hoeppner and Bakken, Katelyn Morgan (Jr.-Green Bay, WI/Notre Dame) added seven points. Hoeppner and Bakken also led the team in rebounds, totaling 11 between them.
The Blugolds will return to Eau Claire for their home opener against Simpson College (Iowa) Friday at 8 PM. It will be the first time of the UWEC Tip-Off Tournament that also includes UW-La Crosse and Wartburg.