HISTORY: UMD women’s basketball pulls off Regional Final comeback, punches program’s first ticket to Elite 8

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Monday the top-seeded University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD) women’s basketball team pulled off a comeback win in just their program’s second-ever NCAA Division II Central Regional Final, and first since 2000-2001, downing third seeded Missouri Southern State University (MSSU) 77-76 at Romano Gym.

MSSU got out to a hot start leading UMD 45-27 at halftime. The Bulldogs put on the gas in the third quarter, scoring 20 points and only allowing 12 to narrow the gap and trail just 57-47 with one quarter to go.

In the fourth quarter the Bulldogs would come within as few as two points trailing 76-74 with under a minute left in the match. At one point they were down by as many as 20 points.

With 15 seconds to go Ella Gilbertson hit a game-winning three pointer for UMD to take the 77-76 lead. MSSU missed on their final shot giving UMD the historic victory.

“We just knew we had to come together. They were beating us up a little bit on the offensive end. So we just had to work together, play like we know we can move the ball. I had faith in us and I knew we could come back and get it. I had an open shot in the corner so was like might as well shoot it and I was open. It was a great pass, just tough defense before that to get to that spot,” said Gilbertson.

Gilbertson and Brooke Olson led the Bulldogs scoring 21 points a piece. For the full box score, Click Here.

UMD (30-3) is now bound for their program’s first-ever NCAA Division II Elite 8 appearance. They now trek to St. Joseph, Missouri. For the full bracket, Click Here.

The No. 6 UMD men’s basketball team will tip-off their first-ever NCAA Central Regional Final Tuesday at 7 p.m. against No. 5 Southern Nazarene in Maryville, Missouri. For the full bracket, Click Here.