WBB Recap – Omaha v. Denver – The Omaha News
Omaha News

WBB Recap – Omaha v. Denver – The Omaha News

By: Geiler Damian, Reporter

The Omaha women’s basketball team defeated the Denver Pioneers 83-73 on senior day this past Saturday at Baxter Arena and they secured the No. six seed and a first-round bye in the Summit League tournament.

The game was intense and very contested from the start with the lead changing 16 times.

Omaha was a bit out of pace in the first half and allowed 13 turnovers that were greatly punished by the Pioneer’s offense commanded by Emma Smith, who scored 26 points.

Omaha head coach Carrie Banks said the number of turnovers and the three-pointers the team was conceding were emphasized during halftime.

The Omaha bench celebrates ferociously after Kennedi Grant scores a three-pointer. Photo by Geiler Damian

“We sped ourselves up a couple of times when we didn’t need to, so I thought we did a better job of managing the pace and even in the fourth quarter it kind of got away from us a little bit,” Banks said. “I thought after a time out we were able to compose and just get back to executing the way we wanted to.”

Throughout the entire second half, the Mavericks only had one turnover and conceded one three-pointer.

Omaha got ten points ahead in the third quarter and maintained that lead scoring 26 points in the fourth quarter, 19 of which were from the free-throw line.

The Mavericks were led by Grace Cave and Elena Pilakouta who scored 18 points.

Aaliyah Stanley driving forward looking to execute a layup. Photo by Geiler Damian.

Pilakouta had 11 rebounds and was unstoppable under the paint. It was a special game for Pilakouta as she had the honor of playing as a Maverick in front of her parents for the first time on her last college home game.

She said it was an extra motivation that kept her going throughout the game.

“I mean, it still doesn’t feel real,” Pilakouta said. “It’s crazy that I have someone waiting for me over there now so it’s just…it’s been a fun couple days.”

As part of senior day, the Mavericks also honored Sam Mitchell, Aaliyah Stanley, and Akili Falici.

The Summit League Tournament bracket is now complete and Omaha will face North Dakota on Sunday, March 5th at 3:00 p.m. at Denny Sanford Premier Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota for a place in the semi-finals.

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