SOUTHERN ILLINOIS 62, MURRAY STATE 61
MURRAY Ky. - Teri Oliver hit a 3-pointer with 12 seconds left to lift the Southern Illinois women's basketball team past Murray State 62-61 Saturday evening at CSFB Arena.
The shot negated a late-game comeback attempt by the Racers, who rallied from a 10-point deficit in the final five minutes of the game to pull ahead 61-59 with 21 seconds to play.
Southern took its biggest lead of the game at 55-45 with 4:58 remaining before Murray State began its late-game charge. During the stretch, the Salukis struggled to get the ball up the court through the Racers' full-court press.
SIU turned the ball over 26 times in the game, including five key turnovers in the final five minutes. During its final possession, though, Saluki forward Charnise Mitchell somehow cut her way through the Racer press and found Oliver open on the left wing for the game winner.
SIU jumped out to a 4-0 lead to start the game, but the Racers scored the next 11 to take their largest lead of the game at 11-4. Southern responded with a 15-4 run sparked by a string of Renee Reed 3-pointers to pull ahead 19-15 midway through the half.
Reed knocked down four first-half threes and scored 16 of her career-best 19 points in the first half to lead the Saluki offense. The redshirt freshman's previous best was six points.
Despite Reed's 3-point shooting torrent, the Racers worked their way back into the lead in the final 10 minutes of the first half, taking a 28-26 lead into halftime. SIU turned the ball over 16 times in the first half.
Coming out of the break, SIU took much better care of the ball and enjoyed some of its most efficient shooting of the season. The Salukis took back the lead five minuts into the half with a 3-pointer by freshman Sidney Goins and pushed the lead to 39-32 with an Oliver trey on the following possession.
SIU continued to push the lead over the next 10 minutes, mostly on inside looks by the frontcourt combo of Katrina Swingler and Mitchell. The duo combined for 17 points in the second half as Swingler scored nine of her 13 after the break and Mitchell scored all of her eight points in the second period.
Once the lead reached 10, however, Murray State's full-court pressure threw a wrench into the Salukis' offensive flow. The Racers converted SIU's late miscues into layups and free throw attempts, making seven of eight in the final five minutes.
The Salukis found a way to get a ball through the Murray State press when it counted, however, for Oliver's game-winner. Racer guard Mariah Robinson, who led all scorers with 20 points, tried for an inside jumper to win the game as time expired, but the shot drew iron.
The Salukis continue what will be a four-game road trip against Purdue Monday in West Lafayette, Ind.
UNI 78, NORTH DAKOTA 54
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa - Senior center Lizzie Boeck and junior guard Katelin Oney each turned in career efforts to help the University of Northern Iowa women's basketball team defeat North Dakota 78-54 Saturday night in the McLeod Center, giving the Panthers their fourth straight victory.
Boeck tallied a career-high 30 points, and she also led UNI (7-3) with nine rebounds. Oney finished 6-of-8 from three-point range to score a career-high 21 points. Jacqui Kalin tallied 11 points, and Erin Brocka finished with eight rebounds and six assists.
North Dakota took an early 14-9 lead, but the Panthers held the Fighting Sioux scoreless for more than five minutes to go on a 16-0 run and build a 25-14 advantage with 5:13 left in the first half.
UND cut the Panther lead to seven, 28-21, but Oney hit threes on back-to-back possessions, and Kalin hit a three with 40 seconds left in the period to send the Panthers into the break in front, 37-23.
Boeck shot 8-of-12 for 21 points in the second half, helping UNI to pull away. The Panther lead stayed between 13 and 20 points until Boeck and Oney hit threes on consecutive trips to stretch the Panther lead to 69-46 with 6:18 to play. The Panthers led by at least 21 points the rest of the way.
The Panthers shot 28-of-59 (47.5 percent) from the floor, including 9-of-19 (47.4 percent) from behind the arc. UNI finished 13-of-19 (68.4 percent) from the free-throw line.
The Panthers committed just 11 turnovers, resulting in 11 points for UND. UNI converted UND's 19 turnovers into 21 points. UNI held a 39-33 rebound advantage.
The Panthers return to action on Wednesday when they play at Iowa.
CREIGHTON 54, NORTH DAKOTA STATE 44
OMAHA, Neb. - Nine Bluejays scored between four and 11 points in Creighton's 54-44 women's basketball victory over North Dakota State Saturday night at D.J. Sokol Arena. Sam Schuett led the Bluejays with 11 points as Creighton opened its longest home stand since 1999 with a victory.
The win moves Creighton to 5-4 on the season, while dropping the Bison to 5-5 on the year.
Creighton missed its first eight shots from the field and was just 1-for-12 from the floor before closing the half making 11 of its final 17 shots from the field to build to a 14-point halftime lead, up 30-16. The Bluejays never trailed by more than four, despite their sluggish start after a week off between games. An 11-0 run between the 7:54 mark and the 2:49 mark moved CU's two-point lead to a 26-13 advantage following a Sarah Nelson put back following an offensive rebound.
The Jays used a balanced scoring attack in the first half to build their lead. All nine Bluejays which played in the first half, scored in the first half. Ally Jensen, Carli Tritz and McKenzie Fujan each had five points in the first half to pace the Bluejays. CU swiped seven steals in the first half and out-rebounded the Bison 22-16 in the opening 20 minutes.
The Bluejays started cold again in the second half, missing their first seven shots from the floor after halftime. While the Bluejays struggled to get their offense in gear in the second half, NDSU was slow to get its offensive game right as well. Creighton maintained its double figure lead for better than nine minutes in the second half, despite the poor shooting. A layup from NDSU's Katie Birkel, a Nebraska native, cut the Creighton lead to 37-28 with 10:32 left in the game. That is the closest the Bison would get for the remainder of the game.
Creighton's largest lead came after a pair of Jasmin Corbin free throws made the score 54-35 with just under two minutes left. From there, the Bison would close the game on a 9-0 run to make the final 55-44.
The Bluejays shot 35.7 percent from the field in the win, 29.4 percent from three-point range (5-17) and 69.2 percent (9-13) at the free throw line. CU out-rebounded NDSU 38-36 in the victory, while forcing 17 NDSU turnovers and committing just 12 turnovers.
Schuett led the balanced scoring attack with 11 points, including eight inthe second half after draining a late three-pointer in the first half. The fifth-year senior also tied Jensen for game-high honors with four assists, while also chipping in four rebounds. Tritz again filled up the stat sheet, finishing with seven points, three rebounds, three assists and three steals. Freshman Sarah Nelson made her first career start and led the Jays with seven rebounds. Kelsey Woodard added seven points and two steals for CU.
The Bluejays return to the court on Monday night when they play host to North Dakota. The Fighting Sioux are 1-7 on the season following a loss at Northern Iowa Saturday night.
BRADLEY 57, NORTHERN ILLINOIS 48
PEORIA, Ill. - Bradley made 16-of-19 free throw attempts, including 14-of-16 in the second half, and committed a season-low 14 turnovers as the Braves extended their win streak to four consecutive games with a 57-48 victory against Northern Illinois Saturday at Renaissance Coliseum. Junior MacKenzie Westcott turned in her second career double-double (11 points & 11 rebounds) to help highlight the win.
A 20-5 run early in the game gave Bradley (7-3) an 11-point advantage (20-9) midway through the opening period, but Northern Illinois (5-6) closed the half with a 9-3 spurt to trim BU's lead to 28-24 at the break.
Bradley struggled offensively in the second half, shooting just 29.2 percent (7-for-24) from the field in the final 20 minutes; but committed just six second-half turnovers and made 14 of its first 15 free throws after halftime to hold off NIU. The Huskies capitalized on BU's offensive woes and went in front 34-32 in the opening minutes of the second half. A pair of free throws by Westcott and three-pointer by junior Lauren Niemiera put the Braves back in front 37-34.
BU held a 41-38 lead midway through the second stanza, when an 11-5 Bradley spurt pushed the advantage to 52-43 with 3:11 to play. Junior Leah Kassing helped highlight the run with four of her nine points, while Westcott added two points and a pair of offensive rebounds to help extend the lead.
NIU's Courtney Shelton ended a five and a half minute scoring drought for the Huskies with a basket in the lane with 1:30 to play to trim the Bradley advantage to 52-45, but Northern Illinois made just 1-of-5 shots in the final 75 seconds of play and Kassing put the finishing touches on a 57-48 win with a basket in the lane with 6.4 seconds left.
Northern Illinois entered the game as one of the top three-point shooting teams in the country, making 43.5 percent from beyond the arc; but Bradley held the Huskies to 26.3 percent shooting from three-point range. The Braves held NIU to 31.6 percent shooting from the field and outrebounded the Huskies 39-37.
Sophomore Katie Yohn scored a game-high 15 points in a career-high 39 minutes, while senior Raisa Taylor added 11 points, seven boards, three assists, two blocks and two steals. Westcott pulled down a career-best 11 rebounds and also had 11 points for her first double-double since her freshman year.
Kassing finished with nine points and seven rebounds off the bench, while Niemiera had six points and six rebounds to help highlight the win.
Bradley returns to action Tuesday when the Braves close out the non-conference schedule with a 7:05 p.m. game at Illinois-Chicago.
No. 23 UW-GREEN BAY 72, EVANSVILLE 48
GREEN BAY, Wis. - The University of Evansville women's basketball team evened its record to 5-5 as they fell to the University of Wisconsin - Green Bay, 72-48, Saturday afternoon at the Kress Center. Green Bay of the Horizon League improved to 10-1 on the season.
Up against the nationally ranked Phoenix, the Aces held their own and even held control of the game, jumping out to an 8-2 lead in the first three minutes of the game. Meagan Collins, making her first start of the season, sparked the run, hitting a three and completed a three-point play at the free throw line. Collins replaced Aces regular starter junior Jordan Lewis who suffered a season-ending knee injury in practice earlier in the week.
Evansville played tenacious defense and was strong with the ball on the offensive end in the hard-fought and physical first half. Despite Green Bay's 11-2 run, the Aces hung in there, as sophomore Taylor Ware served as a play-maker in her eight minutes off the bench, hitting back-to-back layups to put the Aces within one, 15-14, with 9:14 to go.
However, the Aces appeared to run out of gas, as Green Bay suddenly turned the tables with a 19-6 run heading into halftime. After holding the Phoenix without a three for over 17 minutes, UWGB hit four in the final two and a half minutes, capped by Adrian Ritchie's 25-footer at the buzzer to give the Phoenix a 34-20 halftime advantage.
Green Bay steadily stretched its lead in the second half, as Julie Wojta and Kayla Tetschlag took control, scoring 23 and 13 points, respectively.
Freshman Khristian Hart scored a career-high 10 points in 11 minutes to lead the Aces, followed by junior Staci Gillum's eight points. Collins, junior Briyana Blair, and freshman Katie Ellerson added six points.
The Aces shot 32.7 percent (16-for-49) from the field and surrendered 23 turnovers.
The Aces wrap up their non-conference season Wednesday when they travel to Saint Louis to take on the Billikens at 7:00 p.m.