Former Powell Panther Hannah Pollart turned into a hometown heartbreaker as her team-high 19 points and nine rebounds helped Northeastern end Northwest College’s season. Northeastern would be ousted the following night in a loss to Casper.
The Trappers put everything they had into their tournament contest as they pushed a nationally ranked opponent throughout much of the evening. Northwest responded to an early 16-10 deficit with a 15-2 spurt that gave the Trappers their largest lead of the night, 25-18, with 7:30 remaining in the first half.
Northeastern returned the favor, erasing much of the Trappers’ lead with a 7-2 spell.
From there, the two schools flip-flopped narrow leads for the remainder of the first half. Northeastern knocked home a shot from the lane with four seconds remaining to take a 40-38 advantage into halftime.
The second half followed a similar script to the first. Northeastern struck early, re-establishing a six-point cushion. Northwest countered with a run in which it outscored Northeastern by a 12-2 margin to claim a 56-52 edge on the scoreboard.
The Trappers had no sooner completed that flurry when Northeastern countered with a 12-1 run that produced a 64-57 lead with 10:09 to play. Despite the Trappers’ best efforts, that seven-point margin lingered on the scoreboard as the scoreboard clock ticked away.
Mckenzie Garrett connected for a put-back bucket at the 5:15 mark that drew NWC within two. Her basket two minutes later pulled the Trappers within one, 77-76.
From there, Northeastern went on a 10-1 run to seal the game. A display of final-minute accuracy at the foul line helped grow the final spread to a deceptive 13 points.
Much of Northeastern’s damage in the contest came from the team’s advantage inside. The Colorado school scored 50 of its 91 points in the paint and owned a 55-46 rebounding edge.
Valerie Lesu paced the Trappers in her final contest in an NWC uniform. The dual sport performer closed her career with 20 points and five assists. Megan Smith added 19 points and a team-best eight rebounds. Garrett dropped in 16 to provide Northwest with three players in double figures.
Northwest wraps up its season with a 16-15 record. Seven seniors graduate from the Trappers’ roster this spring.
Northeastern 94, Northwest 81
Goodman 3, Smith 19, Garrett 16, Otineru 2, Lesu 20, Duran 5, Butler 3, Fisher 6, Ryan 7.