MARQUETTE, Mich. – The Northern Michigan University women’s basketball team knows how to warm up on a cold winter’s night. NMU shot a sizzling 64.7 percent from the floor in the first half (22-34) en route to an 83-54 win over the Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs Tuesday night at the Berry Events Center. The win takes care of the loss to the Bulldogs earlier in the season in Duluth (53-49).
The Wildcats improve its record to 7-3 overall with the non-conference win. Minnesota-Duluth falls to 7-4 overall on the season.
NMU began the game with a 17-2 run after five minutes of play. The Bulldogs did not score its first basket until the 16:17 mark of the half. Christa Erickson gave NMU a 20-point plus cushion (29-8) when she canned a three-pointer at 11:18. About three minutes later Erickson again dialed from downtown for a 34-14 lead. Hillary Bowling gave the ‘Cats a 46-20 lead at 3:53 after a successful lay-up. Mariah Dunham nailed a three-pointer with 12 seconds left before the half for a 30- point margin for the ‘Cats (54-24). During the first 20 minutes of play the ‘Cats were 9-13 from beyond the arc (69.2 percent).
The second half was the same thing as the ‘Cats held the lead, but cooled off in the shooting department. A three-pointer by Elicia Derusha about three minutes into the half put the ‘Cats up 60-28. NMU did go for about a two minute span without scoring a point. At that time the Bulldogs had the lead down to 64-43. Kellie Rietveld broke the slump with a lay-up at 9:32 for a 66-43 score. When Angie Leckson made one of her two free throws at 6:40 the ‘Cats were up 72-48. NMU ended the game with a 9-4 run for the final margin.
Erickson led all scorers with 16 points for the game. Derusha was the other ‘Cat in double-figures with 12 points. Jheri Booker led the Bulldogs with 15 points. Steffani Stoeger added five rebounds, eight assists and two steals in the win. Dunham added six rebounds to lead the ‘Cats.
For the game the ‘Cats were 30-54 from the floor (55.6 percent). From three-ball land the ‘Cats were 12-21 (57.1 percent). Erickson was 4-6 from beyond the arc while Derusha was 3-3. NMU attempted 17 free throws and made 11 of the throws (64.7 percent). The ‘Cats had a seven-rebound advantage on the boards at 38-31.
NMU will be back in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) play Saturday, Jan. 2 at Michigan Tech.
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Sports Information Director