Carter’s double-double leads Midwestern State into regional final

Andrea Carter is a double-double waiting to happen, and Saturday night, the 5-foot-10 sophomore forward recorded her 17th double-double of the season to lead the Midwestern State University women’s basketball team into the title game of the Division II South Central Regional tournament.

Carter’s 11-point, 14-rebound performance propelled the second-seeded Mustangs (26-5) past Metro State 66-52 at Brownson Arena.

“These ladies continue to amaze me,” Midwestern State coach Noel Johnson said. “They came to play today. We got them down pretty good because of how we attacked offensively, inside-out. We held them to some low points in the first half, and that gave us momentum going into the second half.”

Along with Kirsti DeGelia’s 20-point night, the Mustangs, ranked 25th in the nation, more than handled the methodical pace that was the Roadrunners’ preference. Metro State (21-10), the sixth seed, shot only 25 percent from the field in the first half, which put the ‘Runners into a 42-19 hole, too much to dig out of against Midwestern.

“They run a similar offense to Tarleton, they space you out more,” Johnson said. “Everything was in front of us. We wanted every shot contested, and in turn that gave us an opportunity to get more rebounds, and that really helped in the first half.”

The Mustangs got the ball inside early and kicked it back out, mainly to DeGelia, who hit five of nine from the 3-point line.

“I think it was more our team,” DeGelia said of her offensive night. “Everybody can score, but my teammates driving got me open 3s, and that was mostly it. I got open shots and wasn’t really forcing anything. It’s just a credit to our team getting me open.”

That, in turn, helped free Carter, who attacked the basket and got to the free-throw line, where she hit seven of 11.

Metro finally made a run, but it didn’t come until the Roadrunners were down by 30 points. Metro didn’t score for nearly five minutes to open the second half.

Amy Nelson, who finished with 16 points, and Kristin Valencia, who added 12, helped spark the comeback, cutting the deficit to 12 points, but by that time less than three minutes remained.

“We were getting that tempo, some stops here and there,” Metro coach Tanya Haave said. “In most games for us, if we can’t hit a shot, we’ve got a little bit of resolve. It just felt like it just built the pressure, and we couldn’t get stops, and it just kind of snowballed.”

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