March 4, 2009
Box Score in PDF Format
MUNCIE, Ind. - The Northern Illinois University women's basketball team's dropped a 65-54 decision to Ball State Wednesday night at Worthen Arena.
"We knew coming in it was going to be a tough game," NIU head coach Carol Owens said. "They were going to be physical and come after us. You have to make the most of your opportunities. When we had the opportunity to break it open, we just didn't make the shots we need to make."
Already leading 36-34 with 14:59 left to play, Ball State (21-8, 13-2) rattled off a 10-0 run to open up a 12-point lead with 12:08 left to play. The Huskies (14-14, 9-6) responded with a 6-0 stretch to cut the deficit to 46-40 with 8:44 left in the game. However, an 11-0 Cardinal run extended Ball State's lead to 57-42, its largest of the game, with 3:58 left in the contest.
A 10-2 run for Northern Illinois pulled the Huskies to within seven, 59-52, with 1:22 left to play. Unfortunately for NIU it was too little too late as the Cardinals were able to hold off the Huskie rally and walk away with the victory and the MAC West title.
Mauvolyene Adams (Bolingbrook, Ill./Bolingbrook) was a force inside for the Huskies all game long. She scored a career-high 20 points, going 10-18 from the field and finishing with four rebounds. Shari' Welton (Calumet City, Ill./Thornwood) posted her second straight double digit scoring performance, finishing with 10 points.
"They couldn't guard her," Owens said of Adams' performance. "She was strong inside. That's what we expect from her. She was great tonight."
The Huskies lost the battle on the boards, getting outrebounded for just the sixth time this season 43-36. Ball State took advantage of its trips to the free throw line, going 15-for-18 from the charity stripe. The Cardinals also capitalized on NIU's 12 turnovers, scoring 17 points off Huskie miscues, while NIU scored nine points on Ball State's 11 turnovers.
Both teams were pretty even shooting. NIU out-shot the Cardinals, 38.3 percent to 37.7 percent. Northern was 23-of-60 from the field, including 2-of-13 from three-point territory, while Ball State went 23-for-61, hitting 4-of-16 from beyond the arc.
The Huskies close out the 2008-09 regular season when NIU travels to Western Michigan to face the Broncos. Tip-off is slated for 1 p.m. CST. Fans can follow all the action live on 1360 AM WLBK will Bill Baker on the call.