GALESBURG, Illinois - The Knox Prairie Fire women’s basketball team lost a heartbreaker to the Grinnell Pioneers this Tuesday, narrowly falling 58-57. With their defeat today, the Prairie Fire’s record on the season sits at 2-4 as they look to bounce back from their back-to-back losses.
Knox got off to a productive beginning in the first half, breaking off an 11-0 run to start the game. The Prairie Fire shot a respectable 43% from the floor while draining some three point shots, and in general looked to be stifling the Pioneers defensively, as well. They did this despite not shooting any free throws the entire half, demonstrating their ability to successfully drive to the rim and score. Catessa Duran had some impressive moves in the post to help spur Knox offensively, and she finished the game with 9 points and 8 rebounds in a very sound game. The collective effort of the team helped put the Prairie Fire up by 5 points at halftime.
The second half saw Knox shoot poorly while also having Grinnell make many of their shots, putting the game into a much tighter spot. Despite getting out to another substantial lead, being up by 12 at times, turnovers and poor decision making with their shooting allowed the Pioneers to come back. Knox’s scoring was buoyed by Jessica Lee, who was able to draw fouls and knock down free throws helped her put up 15 points on the day. Unfortunately, Grinnell managed to gain a slim lead in the waning minutes, and Knox missed multiple shots to tie the game, leading to their loss.
Jessica Lee led Knox with 15 points. Catessa Duran and Haylee Carpenter each added nine apiece.
"What a fight our young women came with tonight. After our game Saturday I challenged our women to come back today better and they surely showed up. We are right there in every game," said head coach Kira Mowen. "The little fixes that we can change will lay huge dividends come January. I told them in the locker room I couldn’t be more proud of their fight and how we handled adversity. Jess Lee and Haylee Carpenter did a great job executing all the last second plays drawn up for them. We will be ready for Saturday!"
The Prairie Fire look to get back on solid footing when they travel to play Greenville University this Saturday at 2 p.m.