UNIVERSITY CENTER, Mich. – The Northern Michigan University women’s basketball team for the second time in its past four games needed a little extra time to settle its game. This time the Wildcats were on the winning side of the score. Saturday against the Cardinals of Saginaw Valley State the ‘Cats pulled one out by a score of 69-67.
With the win the ‘Cats move to 12-5 overall on the season and 9-3 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC). The Cardinals fall to 4-13 and 2-10 respectively.
The first half saw the home team sprint out to a seven-point lead (11-4) six plus minutes into the game. Saginaw Valley State had a nine-point cushion (15-6) about eight minutes into the game. Steffani Stoeger’s three-pointer at 10:45 cut the home team’s lead to four points (15-11). Christa Erickson added a three-pointer of her own at 9:15 to narrow the gap to one point (15-14). Saginaw Valley State held off the ‘Cats until 3:48 when Erickson connected from long distance, with a three-pointer, once again to tie the game 21-all, then she made a lay-up (3:27) for a 23-21 NMU lead. After two more ties before the end of the half, Stoeger made a lay-up with five seconds left before halftime for a 29-27 NMU lead at the intermission.
The second half began for the ‘Cats with a three-pointer from Stoeger and a jumper from Kellie Rietveld for a 34-27 game. The Cardinals used a 13-5 run over a span of five minutes to take a 40-39 lead. With Saginaw Valley State holding a 41-39 lead, Holly Cole came off the bench and hit for a three-pointer to give NMU the lead once again 42-41 (13:24). With less than 10 minutes to play in regulation, Angie Leckson used her lay-up to tie the game 48-all. Erickson’s three-pointer at 9:04 gave the ‘Cats the 51-48 lead. Mariah Dunham’s lay-up at 5:32 had the ‘Cats up by seven points (57-50). With about three minutes left in regulation the Cardinals tied the game on a three-point play (57-all). The game would be tied two more times in regulation. The final time was when Dunham sank both of her free throws with 24 seconds left in regulation for a 61-all score. That was how regulation ended.
The extra session saw the home team score the first basket for a 63-61 score. NMU then received a three-pointer from Erickson and a jumper from Dunham for a three –point lead (66-63) with 3:41 left in overtime. After a Saginaw Valley State basket Hillary Bowling made a lay-up for a 68-65 NMU lead (2:59). Leckson went to the free throw line with three seconds left in overtime with the ‘Cats holding onto a one-point lead (68-67), she made her first free throw and missed her second for the final score (69-67).
Stoeger led all scorers with 20 points. Erickson was the only other ‘Cat in double-figures as she ended the game with 17 points. Brittany Burkhardt led the Cardinals with 15 points. Elicia Derusha led the ‘Cats off the glass with seven rebounds.
NMU was 22-62 from the floor for the game (35.5 percent). From the three-point line the ‘Cats were 9-24 (37.5 percent). Eight of NMU’s three-pointers came from Stoeger and Erickson with four each. The ‘Cats were 16-20 from the free throw line (80 percent). NMU had a slight advantage in the rebounding department at 41-38.
NMU stays on the road for its next two games at Ferris State (Jan. 28) and Grand Valley State (Jan. 30).
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Sports Information Director