Bluejays end regular season on a winning note – Women’s Results

Amber Bonham drives past Ottawa defenders for a shot in the lane during the first half of Tabor’s 65-53 in over Ottawa on  Saturday. She hit three 3-pointers to fuel the Bluejays in the first half.
Amber Bonham drives past Ottawa defenders for a shot in the lane during the first half of Tabor’s 65-53 in over Ottawa on Saturday. She hit three 3-pointers to fuel the Bluejays in the first half.
The Tabor College women knocked off the Ottawa Braves, 65-53, after trailing 26-18 in the second quarter.

The Bluejays got off to a lukewarm start, and trailed the visiting Braves 15-11 as the first quarter ended.

With 3:04 left in the second quarter, Tabor was trailing 26-18 when Amber Bon­ham drained a 3-point basket at 2:43 that lit a fire under the Bluejays.

Tabor ended the half with a 12-5 run with four different Bluejays scoring. Bonham finished the run as she started it, with a 3-point basket with 27 seconds left to pull the Bluejays to within one point of the Braves at 31-30. It was her third 3-point basket of the half.

“Amber Bonham was huge for us in the first half with three threes,” coach Shawn Reed said. “She’s a senior who just wants to keep playing, even in a lot of pain (knee injury).”

The end of the second quarter was a preview of what the third quarter would bring. Tabor scored 11 unanswered points to start the quarter and never really slacked off, outscoring Ottawa, 20-9, by the time the third quarter ended.

Heading into the fourth quarter with a 50-40 lead, Tabor finished the game trading points with their opponents and secured the 12-point victory.

Morgan Ediger led the team with 16 points, all in the second half. Bonham, who scored 11 points in the first half, finished with 15. Taylor Deniston tossed in 10.

“In the second half, Mor­gan Ediger makes two step-back mid-range jump shots, then makes a tough three that I thought was way off,” Reed said. “It went in, so she gets going a little bit. We had several people score. It was a good team effort.”

As a team the Bluejays shot nearly 55 percent (24-44) from the floor while Ottawa was successful 37 percent (16-43) of the time.

“Defensively, we were a lot better tonight, and we were better in the second half,” Reed said. “People have been scoring more in the second half than the first half, and I like it that we buckled down.”

The win gives Tabor a final KCAC record of 12-10, which ties them with Kansas Wesleyan for sixth place. The Bluejay will move on to the KCAC tournament by placing among the top eight teams.

Kansas Wesleyan—Tabor rallied in the fourth quarter to position itself for a much-needed road victory, but couldn’t hold off the Coyotes down the stretch for a 61-54 loss Wednesday at Salina.

The first half saw KWU win the first quarter, 18-11, and Tabor winning the second quarter, 14-12, for a 30-25 Coyote lead at intermission. Wesleyan led the Bluejays as by as much as 26-15 at the 4:26 mark of the second quarter.

Kansas Wesleyan led the entire third quarter and posted a 44-37 score at the end of it.

Tabor rallied in the final quarter with a 9-0 start and led 46-44 after Morgan Ediger made a pair of free throws at 7:13. The Bluejays were still leading, 51-47, after Kelsey Unruh hit a pair of free throws at 5:07.

Tabor led 54-49 following a Morgan Ediger 3-pointer with 2:30 left. The next dozen points belonged to the Coyotes, who made two field goals and 8 of 12 free throws down the stretch.

Ediger was the only Bluejay to score in double figures with 23 points, while KWU had three, led by Gabbie Miller with 13.

The game was statistically close between the two teams, with one exception. Tabor had a higher success rate at the free-throw line (11-13) than KWU (18-26), but the home team’s seven-point advantage matched Tabor’s final deficit. The Coyotes had 17 second-chance points to Tabor’s six.

The loss was Tabor’s seventh in eight games, dropping the Bluejays to seventh place in the KCAC with an 11-10 record, and their season record to 14-13.

The win lifted Wesleyan to 12-9 in conference play and a tie for fifth in the standings with Sterling.