Skylar Tsutsui ’15 scored 14 of her game-high 20 points in the second half, but a late rally for the Carleton College women’s basketball team ran out of time as the Knights absorbed a 60-51 setback at the hands of front-running Concordia College.
The Cobbers (13-4, 12-2 MIAC) have now won 10 of their last 11 and moved into sole possession of first place in the MIAC standings, while the Knights (4-13, 4-10 MIAC) dropped three games back in the playoff hunt.
Defense was the story in the first half as both sides struggled to get high-quality looks. While Carleton shot only 33 percent, the Knights limited Concordia to a 32 percent showing.
The Knights overcame an eight–point deficit in the first half with a 9-1 spurt capped by Emma Purfeerst’s ‘14 second three-pointer of the season, knotting at 17-17 with 4:30 remaining in the period. The Cobbers later turned consecutive steals into fast break baskets and carried a 25-19 advantage into the break.
The momentum stayed with Concordia after intermission, and when the dust settled the visitors had strung together a 21-2 run lasting 11 minutes and spanning parts of both periods. Tsutsui finally snapped the Knights’ cold spell with a jumper at the 12:42 mark, but Concordia still possessed a 38-17 lead.
Each mini-Carleton spurt was answered by the Cobbers. The Knights made a finally late charge, putting together a 13-2 burst down the stretch, but the hosts ran out of time to complete the comeback despite Tsutsui’s third career 20-plus point game.
Tricia Sorensen tallied a team-best 19 points and eight rebounds for Concordia.
Carleton opens a three-game road trip with a visit to Bethel University on Saturday, Jan. 26. Tipoff is slated for 1:00 p.m. The game is part of a men’s-women’s double-header.