Kassidi Steel

Sophomore Kassidi Steel almost posted a triple-double Tuesday

ST. LOUIS, Mo. — A 20-point third quarter let the Central College women’s basketball team take command and crack the win column with a 60-54 decision over Fontbonne University (Mo.) Tuesday night.

Tied 27-27 early in the second half, the Dutch (1-3) used an eight-point run to take a 35-27 advantage and the lead was never less than five the rest of the night.

But coach Joe Steinkamp pointed to a play at the end of the first half as pivotal. After another slow start offensively, Central regained its footing but trailed 25-24 in the closing seconds of the second quarter. Then Payton Kizer (freshman, Zwingle, Dubuque Senior HS) drained a 3-pointer at the buzzer to give the Dutch a 27-25 lead at the break and help fuel the third-quarter surge.

Guard Kelsea Hurley (junior, Scottsdale, Ariz., Desert Mountain HS) had another productive night with 23 points on nine-of-15 shooting, but the Dutch were also boosted by double-doubles from guard Kassidi Steel (sophomore, New Sharon, North Mahaska HS) and center Allison Van Gorp (freshman, Pella, Pella Christian HS). Steel had 11 points, a career-best 12 rebounds and a game-high seven assists.

“Kassidi’s a great passer and she also had one of her best defensive nights,” Steinkamp said. “We were excited to see her play like this. We knew what she was capable of.”

Meanwhile Van Gorp had 14 points, 10 boards and three assists.

“Allison was really a force inside,” Steinkamp said. “They ended up having to go zone against us the whole night. She did a really good job of sealing and getting good shots.”

The Dutch shot 39.7% for the game but limited Fontbonne (1-3) to 34.4% shooting and outrebounded the Griffins 39-31.

“It was a good all-around team effort,” Steinkamp said. “Everyone who played, contributed.”

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