WHEATON, Ill. - The Buena Vista women's basketball team held a three-point lead at halftime, but couldn't hold the lead down the stretch as Hanover came back to hand the Beavers a 69-64 loss on Friday afternoon during the opening game of the 2018 Beth Baker Classic, hosted by Wheaton College.
Sophomore Erin Gerke turned in a team-high 11 points and dished out eight assists off the bench while freshman Erin Streit also came off the bench and added 10 points. Cassy Miller was 3-of-4 shooting from downtown and just missed out on double figures with nine points. BVU was 9-of-22 from long range in the game and shot 41 percent from the field overall, but the team couldn't overcome a season-high 28 turnovers.
Buena Vista got off to a bit of a slow start offensivly, making just 4-of-12 from the field in the first quarter but kept pace with the Panthers as the two teams were tied at 11 after the first 10 minutes. BVU was then 7-of-14 in the second and took a 28-25 advantage into the break. Gerke scored six of her points (both 3's) in the third quarter as BVU was 3-of-4 from beyond the arc in the period, but Hanover went 7-of-8 at the free-throw line and held a slim 49-47 lead through three quarters.
The Panthers, playing their season opener, built the lead to eight (62-54) with under three minutes to play, but the Beavers hung around and got back within a point at 63-62 with 1:04 to go. Hanover then got a big layup late in the shot clock and pushed the advantage up to 65-62 with 38 seconds left. Out of a timeout, BVU turned the ball over, and the Panthers turned it into points and led 67-62 with just 15 ticks left on the clock.
Muhlbauer added a late layup with under 10 seconds left, but Hanover made a pair of free-throws to put the game out of reach in the final seconds.
Buena Vista is now 1-1 on the year and will play the loser of Macalester/Wheaton in Saturday's consolation game at 1:00 p.m. Hanover will face the winner in the championship at 3:00 p.m.