Northfield, Minn. – Beth Freeman (Jr./Richfield, Minn.) and Kristi Colbenson (Jr./Rushford, Minn./Rushford-Peterson) scored 18 points each as sixth-ranked Carleton shot 56 percent in the second half to defeat St. Mary's University, 79-68.
Beth Freeman was 8-for-9 from the field and added nine rebounds to lead the Knights. Colbenson grabbed seven rebounds and dished out three assists while matching her career-high scoring total.
Jamie Rattunde of St. Mary's (12-7, 11-5 MIAC) led all scorers with 28 points, 18 in the first half. She also notched all nine of her steals in the first half and grabbed seven rebounds. Angie Arrington tallied 16 points and Ashley Luehmann added 12 for the Cardinals.
Megan Vig (So./Northfield, Minn.) chipped in with 16 points and seven rebounds for Carleton (19-1, 16-1 MIAC), which won for seventh consecutive time. The win allowed Carleton to remain alone in first place in the MIAC, one-half game ahead of the College of St. Benedict.
Carleton raced to an early 24-10 advantage, but the Cardinals rallied back, getting a lay-up from Rattunde and a jumper and three-pointer from April Johnson, cutting the margin to 24-17. Carleton responded, quickly bumping the lead back to double digits before settling for a 35-27 lead at the break.
The Knights opened the second half on a tear, outscoring the Cardinals 14-4 to stretch the lead to 49-30 as Colbenson tallied six points during the string. The Knights extended the lead to as many as 23 and led 71-50 with 6:07 left before SMU made one last run. Rattunde scored on a three-point play, Arrington canned a three-pointer, a pair of free throws and lay-up, putting the Cardinals within 11 with 3:13 left. The visitors couldn't score over the next two minutes, as the Knights held on for their 11th home win against no losses this season.
Carleton shot a 54.7 percent from the floor and held the Cardinals to 41.5 percent. The Knights held a 43-27 advantage on the glass, holding SMU to only five second-chance points. Andrea Dahl (Fy./Maple Grove, Minn./Totino-Grace) added a career-high nine points for Carleton, six coming duing a two-minute stretch in the first half.
Carleton returns to action on Saturday, Feb. 7, travelling to Concordia-Moorhead for a 1 p.m. contest. The Cobbers are currently two games back of Carleton in the MIAC race but are unbeaten at home. The game can be heard live on KYMN 1080 AM.