Twenty-eight years ago to the day, the last time these two teams met on the hardwood, Minnesota beat border rival North Dakota. On Sunday, the Maroon and Gold secured the same fate at Williams Arena as the “W” marks the sixth consecutive home win for the Lady Gophers. After a slow start, the home team trailed 18-31 at the break, though managed to dominate the second half and squeeze out a 46-44 win, improving to 9-2 overall.
Shooting just 27 percent in the first half, the Gophers felt the absence of leading scorer Rachel Banham. However, the team rallied and improved by eight percent following the break where North Dakota dropped to just 14 percent from the field.
The home team ended up winning the rebounding battle by four and scoring in the paint by 12 points, each of which contributed to their come from behind victory. Minnesota’s Amanda Zahui led all scorers with 25, in addition to grabbing 12 rebounds, giving the red shirt freshman her fifth double-double of the season. Teammate Shayne Mullaney added 10 points. Madi Buck led visiting North Dakota with 17.
Minnesota will look to get closer to their season averages of 69 points per game with 48 percent shooting in a non-conference test against UCLA on Friday, Dec. 20 at 12 p.m. CT.