Long-Range Lament

Senior Elizabeth Birkemeyer drives to the basket during the second half of the Cobbers' game with Hamline. She finished with a career-high 21 points on the night.
Senior Elizabeth Birkemeyer drives to the basket during the second half of the Cobbers' game with Hamline. She finished with a career-high 21 points on the night.

MOORHEAD, Minn. (2/25/21)---How do you sum up Concordia's home game with Hamline on Thursday? One team was hot from beyond the arc, the other team wasn't. The team that made 13 3-pointers won the game. End of discussion.

Concordia was outscored 39-12 from 3-point range and 69-57 to the Pipers. The Cobbers went 4-for-20 (20.0%) from long range while Hamline lit up the outside by connecting on 56.5% (13-for-23) of their shots from 3-point range. The 13 long balls are a season high as is their 56.5 shooting percentage from distance. The 13 made 3's are the most for HU since Jan. 12, 2019 when they made 15 against Carleton.     

The loss was the first at home for Concordia while Hamline wins on the road for the first time this season.

GAME RECAP: The Cobbers started slowly but started to get into an offensive rhythm midway through the first period. Concordia trailed 10-7 with 5-minutes left in the first quarter when Elizabeth Birkemeyer connected on a jumper to start a 7-0 run that gave CC a 14-10 advantage. The Cobbers led 18-15 after the first 10 minutes of play but then Hamline turned the game by getting hot from the outside. The Pipers went on a 17-2 run courtesy of four straight 3-pointers and grabbed a 34-22 lead.
They would hit one more long ball before the break and the Cobbers would trail 37-27 at the half.     

Concordia used the break to regroup and pushed the game to the Pipers at the start of the third quarter. CC scored 7-1 streak and when Autumn Thompson connected on a 3-pointer at the 5:44 mark, the Cobbers had pulled within four at 38-34.

Hamline called timeout and proceeded to finish out the quarter by scoring 12 of the final 14 points which pushed the lead to 14 points at 50-36.

A 14-4 Piper run to start the fourth would put the game out of reach but the Cobbers showed their mettle by fighting to the end. CC scored the last 13 points in the game to bring the final total to 69-57.

BIG NIGHT FOR THE BIRKEMEYERS: Senior Elizabeth Birkemeyer capped her career at home by scoring a career-high 21 points. She went 8-for-11 from the floor and 4-for-4 from the free throw line and when she connected on a layup in the final minute of play she eclipsed her previous single-game high of 20 points which came at Carleton on Feb. 13, 2019.      

What made the night even more special was the fact that her Dad was on the play-by-play call for the Cobber Athletics video stream. Jim Birkemeyer was brought on to do the broadcast after Hall of Fame broadcaster Larry Knutson was unable to make the game because of a prior commitment. Jim Birkemeyer is the Sports Director at KRJB radio in Ada and this was the first time since high school that he has been able to call one of her daughter's games.

SCORING STUFF: Concordia outscored Hamline in practically every statistical category except 3-point shooting. CC held a 30-22 advantage in points in the paint, a 16-11 edge in points off of turnovers and a 13-12 margin in second chance points. Those numbers paled in comparison to the 39-12 margin for points from long range.

STARTERS SLUMP: While Birkemeyer put up a career-high point total, her 21 points outscored the other four Cobbers combined point total. CC's other four starters went 7-for-30 (23.3%) and finished with 18 points.
 
SEM SISTER: Junior Mary Sem is usually in the spotlight for scoring but on Thursday it was her freshman sister Jennie Sem that grabbed the headlines for scoring her first collegiate points. Jennie was 2-for-2
from the floor, added a rebound an assist in seven minutes of play.

TOP COBBERS: MIAC Player of the Week Emily Beseman and sophomore Vanessa Kedl tied for the team lead in rebounds. They both grabbed five boards on the night. Junior guard Autumn Thompson led CC with three assists.  

UP NEXT: Concordia will start their 4-game road trip to finish the year when they play at Gustavus on Saturday, Feb. 27 at 4 p.m. The Gusties are unbeaten on the year with a 3-0 record and are coming off an 81-51 win at St. Mary's on Thursday.   

RECAP SPONSOR: Tonight's recap sponsor is Microtel Inn and Suites. Whenever head coach Kim Wagers wants to get away from nightmares of opposing team's making boatloads of 3-pointers, she gets a good night's sleep at Microtel Inn and Suites. Microtel's support of Cobber athletics helps Concordia's student/athletes excel on the court and in the classroom.