Jan. 31, 2008
Box Score in PDF Format
DEKALB, Ill.-The Northern Illinois University women's basketball team extended its winning streak to a season-high three games when it defeated Buffalo, 77-63, Thursday night at the Convocation Center.
The Huskies (8-12, 4-3) continued to play solid basketball, never trailing against the Bulls. NIU jumped on top early opening the game with a 7-2 run. A 9-2 run by the Huskies midway through the first half extended their lead to 20-11 with 9:37 left in the half. Northern Illinois led by 20, their largest lead of the game, with 1:16 left in the first half. Buffalo (10-10, 3-4) closed the gap to 15 and went into the break down 45-30.
The Bulls opened the second half with a 13-4 run to cut the deficit to six, 49-43 with 15:30 left to play. That would be as close as the Bulls would get. NIU settled down and retook control of the game.
"At the half we were up 15 and I thought, don't have any let-ups. Teams are going to make runs," NIU head coach Carol Owens said. "When you know they have three wins on the road in the MAC, and they play so well on the road, you have to be concerned. But during the game, you are more focused on possession by possession.
"I thought we had some let-ups. We had two turnovers at the end of the half that gave them some momentum. It was not necessarily their defense, but our lack of focus in the last minute and we talked at halftime about not having let-ups."
The Huskies got production from everybody in the line up. For the second time this season, Northern Illinois had four players reach double figures. Jessie Wilcox (Oshkosh, Wis./West) led all scored with 22 points, followed by Whitney Lowe (Bushnell, Ill./Prairie City) with 15.
"We needed to attack and be aggressive from the get-go," Wilsoc said. "I wanted to attack, get to the free throw line and take what the defensive gave us."
Shari' Welton (Calumet City, Ill./Thornwood) finished with 13 points shooting 3-9 from the field and going 7-12 from free throw line and hauling in seven rebounds. Kylie York (Fishers, Ind./Hamilton Southeastern) continued her hot shooting from three-point territory, going 3-7 from the field, all from beyond the arc, to finish with 10 points.
The Huskies won the rebounding battle, 37-33 and converted 17 Buffalo turnovers into 22 points. The Huskies had 16 miscues that the Bulls cashed in for 13 points.
The Huskies embark on a two-game road trip when NIU travels to Akron to take on the Zips Sunday Feb. 3, 2008. Tip off is set for 1 p.m. CST. Fans can follow all the action with Bill Baker on 1360 AM WLBK.