Freshman Riley Gatton of Montezuma scored 20 points and sophomore Hannah McKinney of Des Moines added 17 as the Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC) women's basketball team closed the 2019-20 regular season with an 81-69 loss to Southwestern Community College (SWCC) February 26 at Creston.
The loss was the third in a row for the Bears, who finished the regular season at 10-19 overall and 4-12 in the Iowa Community College Athletic Conference (ICCAC).
SWCC led throughout the game. The Spartans were up 18-12 at the end of the first quarter, 39-29 at halftime and 58-55 at the end of the third quarter.
DMACC, which trailed by as many as 15 points early in the third quarter, got a pair of free throws from sophomore Taelor Lessmeier of Fort Dodge to tie the game at 50 with 2 minutes, 57 seconds to play in the period. Gatton's basket 30 seconds into the fourth quarter got the Bears to within one at 58-57, but SWCC responded with a pair of three-point baskets for a 64-57 advantage and DMACC never got closer than four points the rest of the way.
The Bears shot 37 percent, hitting 25 of 68 field goal attempts. They were 9-of-26 from three-point range and 10-of-17 from the free throw line.
SWCC came away with a 52-44 advantage on the boards with freshman Jada Powell of Des Moines pulling down 15 rebounds to lead DMACC. Lessmeier dished out a team-high five assists and freshman Shamir Brown of Tuscaloosa, Ala., led the Bears in steals with three. Freshman Katelyn Courtney of Ames had a pair of blocked shots.
The DMACC women's basketball team will play in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Region XI Division II Women's Basketball Championship March 2 to 8. Pairings for the tournament will be announced after ICCAC conference play is completed on Feb. 29.