Tamra Braun's (Savage, Minn./Prior Lake H.S.) putback with 1.2 seconds remaining off of a Jamie Gutowski (Crown Point, Ind./Andrean H.S.) miss gave Valparaiso a 50-48 come-from-behind victory over UMKC on Saturday afternoon at the Athletics-Recreation Center.
The Kangaroos' Erin Pauk drained a three-pointer with 34 seconds remaining, UMKC's only trey of the game, to tie the contest at 48. Valpo then ran the shot clock down and Gutowski's three from the right wing missed long and Braun scored on a putback from the backside.
Valpo trailed by five, 24-19 at intermission and saw the Kangaroos score the first four points of the second half to put UMKC in front by nine, the largest lead of the game for either team. The Brown and Gold responded with a 12-2 run over 5:35, keyed by a conventional three-point play by Katie Boone (Greenwood, Ind./Center Grove H.S.) and another Boone lay-in, to go in front 33-32 with 12:22 to play. The lead was Valpo's first since 14-13 with 7:47 left in the opening stanza.
Valpo built its lead to five, 48-43, with 2:17 to play after Betsy Rietema (Grand Rapids, Mich./Christian H.S.) jumper. Pauk made a pair of free throws with 50 seconds remaining, and a Crusader missed free throw set up Pauk's game-tying triple.
Rietema led all scorers with 15 points for Valpo, while grabbing a team-high six rebounds. Braun added 12 points, while Meredith Baugher (Berea, Ohio/Berea H.S.) came off of the bench to add ten for the Brown and Gold.
Tennille Grant led UMKC (11-11, 8-3 Mid-Con) with 12 points and 16 rebounds. Pauk and Carlai Moore added ten points each for the Kangaroos.
UMKC shot 43.8% from the floor in the game, but committed 17 turnovers, while Valpo connected on 37.7% of its shot but turned the ball over just ten times, and just three in the second half.
Valparaiso (14-10, 9-4) will return to the hardwood on Monday evening as the Crusaders entertain Oral Roberts in a 7:05 p.m. game at the ARC.