UNIVERSITY CENTER, Mich. – The Northern Michigan University women’s basketball team kept its Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) tournament hopes alive and kicking with a 72-63 victory over the Saginaw Valley State Cardinals Thursday. The Wildcats have a big game on Saturday (Feb. 28) when they travel up the road to tangle with the Lake Superior State Lakers.
With the win the ‘Cats improve to 14-12 overall and 9-12 in the GLIAC. The Cardinals drop to 3-23 and 2-19 respectively.
With the score tied at eight-all, NMU used an 11-2 run to take a 19-10 lead about seven minutes into the game. Nine of the 11 points during the run came via the three-point route. Three-pointers were made by Christa Erickson with two and Kelsey Deacon. With less than 10 minutes left in the half the Cardinals had the NMU lead down to one (19-18) as the ‘Cats answered with a three-pointer by Deacon and a lay-up by Erin Powers for a 24-18 edge. After Powers made one of her two free throws Deacon hit from beyond the arc again for a 28-20 NMU lead with 7:03 left in the half. She then hit for another three for a 31-20 lead. With about two minutes left in the half, the ‘Cats enjoyed its biggest lead of the half (38-24) when Erickson canned her own three-pointer. The ‘Cats ended the half with a 40-31 lead.
The second half began with the Cardinals cutting into the ‘Cats lead about five minutes in the half (42-37). Angie Leckson answered with two free throws and a lay-up over a span of a minute plus (46-37). When Holly Cole hit her three-pointer at 12:13 the ‘Cats held a 49-42 lead. That lead soon was 11 points when Cole hit another three-pointer with 10 minutes left in the game. SVSU had the NMU lead down to seven points with a little over five minutes left in the game. Leckson made a lay-up with 4:36 left in the game for a nine-point game (60-51). Cole’s three-pointer at 3:21 made the score 63-55. NMU scored its last nine points from the free throw line for the win.
Deacon led all scorers with 25 points. Twenty of her points were scored in the first half. Deacon scored 18 of her points from the three-point line as she was 6-14. Leckson off the bench added 12 points. Brittany Burkhardt led the Cardinals with 23 points. Leckson and Powers each had five rebounds to pace the ‘Cats. Kellie Rietveld added a game-high five assists.
After shooting 46.7 percent (14-30) from the floor in the first half the ‘Cats shot 36.1 percent for the game (22-61). NMU was 12-35 from the three-point line (34.3 percent). The ‘Cats were 16-23 from the stripe (69.6 percent). The Cardinals outrebounded the ‘Cats by three (41-38).
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Sports Information Director