Nov. 29, 1997

Michigan State Downs Texas

Bella Engen
Bella Engen scored a game-high 27 points.
(File photo)

AUSTIN, Texas -- The Michigan State women's basketball team opened a nine-game road swing with an 80-78 overtime win over Texas on Nov. 29, before 5,984 fans at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas.

Senior forward Bella Engen was the star of the game, scoring a career-high 27 points to help MSU improve to 3-1 overall. The loss dropped the Longhorns to 1-3 on the season.

"I have so much respect for Jody Conradt and the Texas program," MSU coach Karen Langeland said following the victory. "For us to be on the road and come away with a win is a tribute to our players."

After going 0-for-4 from the field in the first half, junior Pernille Dalgaard scored eight of MSU's first 10 points to open the second half and give MSU its biggest advantage of the game at 49-37 with 16:08 left in the game.

Following a Texas timeout, the Longhorns went on a 12-3 run, paced by Edwina Brown's seven points, to pull within three poins at 52-49 with 11:29 remaining in the contest. Jaime Bailey's bucket with 8:55 left tied the game at 55-55, the first of six ties in the final nine minutes of the contest.

Edwina Brown put the Longhorns up 59-57 at the 7:17 mark and a pair of free throws by Kim Lumus with 5:55 remaining gave Texas its biggest lead since early in the first half.

Texas continued to maintain the momentum when a blocking foul on Jamie Wesley sent Edwina Brown to the charity stripe where she made a pair to give the Longhorns a 69-67 lead with 37 seconds left in regulation.

Sophomore Kristen Rasmussen made a sweet pass to a driving Engen, who made an easy layup to tie the game at 69-69 with 13 seconds left. The Longhorns called timeout with 12.4 seconds remaining, but were unable to connect on a shot and the game went into overtime.

"There were some moments in the game that we could have folded," Langeland said. "That would be very typical of a young team, but we hung in there. We did the things we needed to do and consequently came away with a win."

MSU took the early advantage in overtime and held a 77-74 lead with 2:05 left in the game. Texas cut the lead to 77-76 with one minute to go following a pair of free throws by Vanessa Wallace.

A foul on Angela Jackson sent Dalgaard to the free throw line where she missed the front end of a 1-and-1. Texas was unable to take advantage, losing the ball out of bounds on its next trip down the court.

The Longhorns were forced to foul and Rasmussen came through for the Spartans, sinking two free throws with 27 seconds left to give MSU a 79-76 lead.

Edwina Brown then drove the length of the court and scored a layup to make it 79-78 with 18 seconds left. Texas again fouled, sending Maxann Reese to the charity stripe where she missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 13 seconds remaining.

Texas got the rebound, but a three-pointer by Kim Lumus with five seconds left was no good and the ensuing foul sent Dalgaard to the free throw line. She made the first of two free throws with three seconds left to secure the victory.

Engen had 11 rebounds along with her 27 points for the fourth double-double of her career. Rasmussen was the only other Spartan in double figures with 16 points and eight rebounds.

The Spartans, who shot 50 percent from the field, also got nine points from Dalgaard and Reese. Rookie Christie Pung, who made her second career start at the point, added eight points and a career-high eight assists.

Edwina Brown paced five Texas players in double figures with 22 points, while Jackson finished with 20 points and 11 rebounds.