INDIANOLA, Iowa -- After trailing by two going into the fourth quarter, the Simpson women's basketball team went on a 15-2 run in the final minutes to seal a 65-55 victory over Luther on Monday to climb the American Rivers Conference standings.
The Storm (17-5, 9-4 A-R-C) have already clinched a spot in the conference tournament, but just passed the Norse (9-10, 8-4) for third place in the standings.
Simpson opened up the last period with a 10-2 run, which was sparked by 3-pointers from Janey Botkins and Cassie Chubb. After holding a six-point lead, the Luther answered with an 8-0 run and had a 50-48 lead with just under three minutes left.
In the final minutes, the Storm embarked on the 15-2 run to end the game, which broke a two-game losing skid. Claire Johnson helped erase the deficit and put the game away by scoring six points during that stretch.
Both teams came out of the gate flat from behind the arc. The visitors went 1 of 7 from three and the Storm went 1 of 5 during the opening quarter. The scoring output went up a little bit in the second as Simpson buried three treys and and four free throws.
Neither team shot over 17 percent in the third quarter. Out of the nine points the Storm scored in the third, seven of those were unanswered and brought the game to 39-38, with Luther holding onto a slight lead.
The Storm proved why they are the top free throw shooting team in the conference and shot 79.3 percent from the line and made 23 of 29.
Jenna Taylor paced the squad with 12 points and had six boards, while Janey Botkins produced 11 points. That was Botkins first game with double-digit points in the last seven contests. Cassie Chubb was all over the glass and ripped down 11 rebounds and she added nine points to her stats, and Kia Rasmussen added five points off the bench with Chubb.
Simpson kept Luther's Laura Hamilton near her season average of 13.3 points per game with 14 points, she currently ranks fifth in the league in scoring.
The 23 made free throws were the most the team has had in a game all season and the 29 attempts were the second most … The 17 made field goals ties the lowest output of the year … There were eight lead changes and eight ties during the game … Luther led just a hair over 23 minutes of game action, while Simpson was the leader for 10 minutes.
The Storm travel out of state on Wednesday to play at Nebraska Wesleyan. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m in Lincoln, Neb.