Dec. 29, 2007
Final Stats | Quotes
Northern Illinois 59, Arkansas-Little Rock 55 in PDF Format
DeKalb, Ill. - Northern Illinois forward Shaun Logan (Eldridge, Iowa/North Scott/Kirkwood C.C.) delivered an all-around performance of a season-high 20 points, eight rebounds, five steals and three blocked shots, to help the host Huskies secure the 59-55 victory over Arkansas-Little Rock in NIU's non-conference finale at the Convocation Center on Saturday afternoon.
NIU freshman guard Darion Anderson (Chicago, Ill./Carver Military Academy) added 13 points, while senior forward Egan Grafel (Oberlin, Kan./Decatur Community/Cloud County C.C.) chipped in 11 points and seven boards.
"This was a great win for our program," NIU head coach Ricardo Patton said. "Our young men stepped up big and made huge plays down the stretch.
"I thought our intensity was good for forty minutes," Patton continued. "With the schedule that we've played we have learned that if you play with intensity for forty minutes, anything can happen."
With the victory, Northern Illinois improves to 3-9 on the campaign, while the Trojans fall to 9-3 overall.
UALR guard Terrance Akins was unconscious as he converted 7-of-10 three point attempts, six in the first half, on his way to a game-high 25 points for the Trojans.
Outside of Akins, NIU kept the rest of the UALR offense in check as the other Trojans combined to shoot 8-for-36 (22.2%) from the field. The Huskie defense turned in a season-best all-around performance as they held the Trojans to 34.0% (17-for-50) shooting and 22 turnovers.
"We spend the majority of our practice time on our defense," Patton said. "I think that right now our defense is certainly ahead of our offense.
"Our emphasis has always been on the defensive end."
Saturday's contest featured several scoring runs for both teams. UALR's final scoring spree was a 17-2 run in the second half that gave them a 49-44 lead with 7:51 left in the game.
The Huskies quickly quelled any thought of a Trojan road victory, as NIU countered with a 15-6 run, behind a combined 11 points from Grafel (6 points) and Anderson (5 points) to secure the win.
NIU is back in action on Saturday, January 5, 2008 as they travel to Kalamazoo, Michigan for their Mid-American Conference home opener against Western Michigan at 1 p.m. (CST).