Huskies Defeat Broncos, 59-51; Head to EMU for MAC Tournament

GO HUSKIES Lehman had nine points in the first half and finished with 16.
GO HUSKIES
Lehman had nine points in the first half and finished with 16.
GO HUSKIES

March 8, 2014

Final Stats

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DeKALB, Ill. - The Northern Illinois women's basketball earned its final win of the regular season Saturday afternoon as it defeated Western Michigan (12-17, 8-10 MAC) on Senior Day, 59-51. Freshman Ally Lehman (Nineveh, Ind./Indian Creek) led the Huskies in the effort with 16 points on 7-of-13 shooting.

While the Huskies earned victory, Eastern Michigan earned the upset victory of the Mid-American Conference season as it defeated in-state foe Central Michigan in overtime, 99-85. NIU will be the No. 9 seed in MAC Tournament, heading to No. 8 seed EMU for a Monday evening matchup with the Eagles.

While the Huskies earned victory, Eastern Michigan earned the upset victory of the Mid-American Conference season as it defeated in-state foe Central Michigan in overtime, 99-85. NIU will be the No. 9 seed in MAC Tournament, heading to No. 8 seed EMU for a Monday evening matchup with the Eagles.

"Defensively we did a lot of good things. We knew that (Western Michigan) was going to set a lot of ball screens and when we got down, we came back strong with our defense to hold them down. I'm just so proud of this team right now," said Head Coach Kathi Bennett.

After hitting the first basket of the game, a hook shot by Natecia Augusta (Peoria, Ill./Limestone), the Huskies found themselves in an 11-2 hole at the first media timeout. The Northern Illinois defense then clamped down as it outscored Western Michigan 25-20 in the final 15 minutes of the half as NIU attacked the rim, led by Lehman's hot shooting. The Huskies would trail the Broncos at halftime by only four points, 31-27.

The freshman finished the period with nine points as she shot 4-of-6 from the field. As a team, the Huskies shot 9-of-21 from the field for a clip of .429. Northern Illinois benefitted from its aggressive play as it drew three fouls in the first half on WMU leading scorer Miracle Woods, who finished the game with four fouls and six points in the effort.

In the second period, NIU took over the game as it shot 13-of-25 from the field (.522) while Western Michigan only put up a clip of 30.4 percent (7-of-23) in the half. The Broncos finished 20-of-55 (.364) from the field.

While WMU led for 19 minutes of the first half, the Huskies regained the lead on a three-point shot by Amanda Corral (Hobart, Ind./Hobart) with 17:55 left in the contest, 34-33. NIU did not relinquish the lead in the contest, though it was tied with WMU with 13 minutes left, and built its lead to 12 points with two minutes left in the contest.

The Northern Illinois defense was so hot in fact that it did not allow a single Bronco player to score 10-or-more points in the first game as Marquisha Harris led WMU with eight points in the contest. It was the first time all season an opponent did not have a double digit scorer.

Corral finished the game with 13 points, going 4-for-11 from the field and 2-for-4 from behind the three-point line to become the second Huskie to reach double-figures. Senior Ashley Sneed (Harvey, Ill./Thornton) finished with seven points, shooting 3-of-5 in the contest.

Northern Illinois scored 19 points off of turnovers and accounted for 27 points off the bench. The Huskies also outscored the Broncos in paint, 22-18.

The Huskies will open the Mid-American Conference Tournament on Monday, March 10 as the No. 8 seed, playing at No. 8 Eastern Michigan. Tipoff is scheduled for 4 p.m. Central time at the EMU Convocation Center. Visit EMUEagles.com for ticket information.


 

 

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