Jan. 22, 2013
NIU-WMU Game Notes
DeKALB, Ill. - Northern Illinois continues its 56th season with its 48th meeting against Western Michigan at the Convocation Center on Wednesday, January 23 at 7 p.m. CT. The teams split the regular season series last season but NIU ousted WMU from the 2012 Mid-American Conference Tournament with a 68-51 win on March 3, 2012 in DeKalb in the teams' last meeting.
The Last Meeting
|Western Michigan (MAC Tournament 1st Round)||51
March 3, 2012
Huskies Move on to Cleveland with First MAC Tourney Win Since 2007
The Northern Illinois women's basketball team wiped its mouth clean after getting the bad taste of Tuesday's loss out with a 68-51 win over Western Michigan on Saturday afternoon at the NIU Convocation Center. With the Huskies' first Mid-American Conference Tournament win since 2007, No. 7 NIU (13-16, 6-10 MAC) eliminated No. 10 WMU (8-22, 5-11 MAC) and will face No. 6 Akron (14-17, 7-9 MAC) in Cleveland's Quicken Loans Arena on Wednesday, March 7, at 1:30 PM CT in the second round.
Date: Wednesday, Jan. 23
Tip-Off: 7:00 p.m. CT
Location: DeKalb, Ill.
Arena: Convocation Center
Webcast: Huskie All-Access
Live Stats: NIUHuskies.com
Radio: Huskie All-Access
Series: WMU leads 28-19
2012-13 Record: 5-12, 0-4 MAC
Home/Away/Neutral: 2-3 | 1-8 | 2-1
Last Game: L, 83-56 at Central Michigan
Head Coach: Kathi Bennett
Career Record: 327-223 (20th year)
Record at NIU: 31-46 (3rd year)
Record vs. WMU: 3-2
2012-13 Record: 5-12, 1-3 MAC
Home/Away/Neutral: 4-3 | 1-8 | 0-1
Last Game: W, 84-77 vs. Akron
Head Coach: Shane Clipfell
Career Record: 18-24 (2nd year)
Record at WMU: 5-12 (1st year)
Record vs. NIU: 1-1
Football Poster Night
In celebration of Northern Illinois football's second straight Mid-American Conference championship and first-ever Orange Bowl appearance, the first 500 fans to attend the game will receive a commemorative back-to-back MAC championship/Orange Bowl football poster.
-- NIU is looking for its first Mid-American Conference win to avoid a 0-5 start in league play for the first time ever. Since joining the NCAA in 1982-83, NIU has never lost its first five games in conference play in any of its affiliations (Mid-American (1982-86, 1997-current), North Star (1987-92), Mid-Continent (1992-94), Midwestern Collegiate (1994-1997)). The Huskies' current five-game losing streak is the first streak, winning or losing, of the season longer than two games.
-- WMU leads the all-time series 28-19 but NIU took the last meeting to eliminate the Broncos from the first round of the 2012 MAC Tournament with a 68-51 win in DeKalb on March 3, 2012. The teams split the regular season series last year with each winning on the road. WMU has won four of last six series contests.
-- This game marks the end of NIU's longest home stretch of the season with four home games in a five-game span from Jan. 13-26. The Huskies are 2-3 at home this season and 17-16 overall under Bennett. Five of the Huskies' first eight MAC games are at home this season.
Scouting Western Michigan
Under first-year head coach Shane Clipfell, WMU is 5-12, 1-3 in MAC play. The Broncos have lost five of their last six games but are coming off an 84-77 win at home over Akron, which was UA's first loss in MAC play this season. WMU is averaging 61.2 points per game and allowing 68.6. The Broncos are shooting 37.6 percent from the field and giving up a 43.2 percent rate to foes. WMU is 1-8 on the road and have lost six in a row.
Last Time Against Western Michigan
Just four days before losing to WMU at home in the MAC regular season finale, NIU pounced on the Broncos in the first round of the 2012 MAC Tournament for their first tourney win since 2007 in a 68-51 decision. The Huskies' largest win over a MAC opponent all year was fueled by a 61 percent shooting clip, which set an NIU postseason and Convocation Center record. NIU jumped out to a 13-2 lead and never looked back as Amanda Corral scored 13 of NIU's first 26 points en route to a career high 21-point effort.
Chips Trip Huskies
Last Saturday, Central Michigan handed NIU its largest loss of the season by scoring the most points against NIU all season in an 83-56 win in Mount Pleasant, Mich. A 42-19 scoring edge for CMU in the second half built on a slim 41-37 halftime lead, despite the Huskies' 61.5 percent first half shooting performance. A CMU 19-4 run in the middle of the second half sealed the deal. For the game, CMU held edges over NIU in points off turnovers (17-6), second chance points (12-3), fast break points (13-2) and bench points (38-12).
Huskies Slow Akron, But Not Enough for a Win
Akron entered last Wednesday's game on a hot streak -- the Zips had won their last three games by a margin of over 36 points per game. The Huskies trailed by just one at half, 31-30, after making 10 of their first 14 shots and lost by 11 points. A tough 18-2 run in the second half ended NIU's hopes of ending Akron's winning streak. NIU held the nation's 10th-best scoring team to 15 points less than their season average and allowed only a 39.3 shooting percentage. The win for Akron was just its second-ever in DeKalb as the Huskies are now 8-2 all-time at home against the Zips. NIU fell to 0-4 in MAC play for the third straight year.
Turnovers Doom NIU Against Ball State
In NIU's MAC home opener, 25 turnovers (19 unforced) helped Ball State claim a 57-51 win on Jan. 13. NIU's second-highest turnover total of the year led to 21 BSU points. Two straight threes by Satavia Taylor gave NIU a 45-43 lead with 10:42 left but a 10-2 run by the Cardinals gave them the lead for good. BSU outscored NIU in the paint 28-8. NIU fell to 0-3 in MAC home openers under Bennett.
Buffalo Bruises Way to MAC Opener Win
Despite an 18-point effort by Amanda Corral on Jan. 10, it was not enough to overcome 20 turnovers and a 25-for-34 to 8-for-13 free throw disparity for Buffalo in a 60-53 loss on the road, ending a season long five-game road trip for NIU with a 1-4 record. The trip covered over 3,100 miles from Dec. 22-Jan. 10. The loss dropped NIU to 6-13 in MAC openers and 0-3 under Bennett. The win also gave Buffalo just its fourth-ever against NIU and first-ever in Buffalo as NIU was 13-3 overall and 6-0 in Buffalo in the series prior to the game.
Sharing the Win
In NIU's 69-38 win over Norfolk State on Dec. 29, the Huskies racked up 14 assists on 21 baskets, including 10 on 11 first half field goals. NIU largest winning margin of the year yielded its second highest assist total of the season, coming short of the 19 it had at Morehead State. Jenna Thorp handed out the most versus NSU with a career high five assists. NIU's 9-for-15 day from three-point range was a season best in attempts and threes made as well.
Augusta Earns All-Tournament Nod
For the second time in her career, Natecia Augusta posted back-to-back double digit scoring efforts as she scored a team-high 14 points versus Xavier and added 12 against Norfolk State at the 2012 Cavalier Classic. Her 13 points and three rebounds per game earned her an all-tournament selection as she went 8-for-11 on field goals and 10-for-10 on free throws. For the season, she is shooting a MAC seventh-best 78.8 percent on free throws and is averaging a career high 6.8 points per game.
Common Threads to Victory
Three factors have all rang true in NIU's five wins this season -- holding a halftime lead, winning the turnover battle and capitalizing on turnovers. The Huskies are 5-1 when leading at the half and 0-11 when trailing. They are 4-1 when committing less turnovers than their opponent and 1-11 when having more. They are 5-2 when scoring more points off turnovers than their opponent and 0-10 when scoring less.
After missing all but six minutes of the South Dakota State game and the whole Bradley game due to a left ankle sprain, Amanda Corral has returned as good as ever versus Loyola, Indiana State, DePaul, Eastern Illinois, Illinois Chicago, Xavier and Norfolk State. She scored a season-high 19 points in each of the first two games, added 15 versus DePaul, 10 against EIU, 19 again at UIC, 11 versus Xavier and 11 against Norfolk State. She has 166 points her last 12 games, the most she's scored in 12 straight games in her young career, and has raised her scoring average per game to a career high mark of 13.3, which ranks sixth in the MAC. Her streak of double digit scoring efforts ended at seven at Valparaiso as she scored nine points. Corral also ranks fourth in the MAC in free throw percentage (79.7%), sixth in three-point percentage (39.4%) and 14th in field goal percentage (41.9%).
Corral Again Named MAC Female Scholar-Athlete of the Week
On Dec. 18, the league office announced Amanda Corral as the Mid-American Conference Female Scholar-Athlete of the Week for the second time in three weeks. She had 15 points, six rebounds and two assists against DePaul to earn the honor as she boasts a 4.0 GPA in health sciences. Corral garnered the award for the first time in her career on Dec. 6 after she scored 19 points with four rebounds and an assist and block in a win over Loyola.
Tay and the Trey
Satavia Taylor's 6-for-6 three-point performance against Morehead State set the NIU record for accuracy behind the arc in a game. She also went a perfect 4-for-4 against Ball State en route to a career-high 24 points, the most a Huskie has scored this season by five points. She ranks fifth in the MAC with a 40.3 three-point percentage and 12th in scoring (11.4 points per game). NIU leads the MAC in threes percentage (35.1%)
Huskies have 2-1 Showing in Preseason WNIT
In their second-ever Preseason WNIT appearance, the Huskies fell at Iowa in the first round but rebounded strong in the consolation rounds. NIU beat Davidson 64-61 and then cruised past Morehead State 76-46 for a 2-1 record to start the season -- the third 2-1 start for Bennett in three years as NIU head coach.
NIU Inks Two Impressive Frontcourt Players for 2013-14
In the early signing period in November, the Huskies received National Letters of Intent from 6'0" combo player Jazmine Harris (West Allis, Wis./Heritage Christian) and 5'10" do-it-all player Ally Lehman (Nineveh, Ind./Indian Creek). Both were all-state selections as juniors as Harris averaged 12.5 points and 9.0 rebounds per game while Lehman netted 26 points, 13.5 rebounds, 5.8 assists, 4.4 steals and 3.5 blocks per game.
Huskies Playing 20th Season in NCAA Division I
Overall, the Huskies are 431-459 (.484) in 20 seasons of Division I play. NIU has been to the NCAA Tournament five times (1989-90, 1991-92, 1992-93, 1993-94, 1994-95).
Building on Bennett's Year 2 Success
Entering Year 3 of the Kathi Bennett era, the 300-win coach has the NIU women's basketball program pointed in the right direction. The Huskies tallied two wins in the 2012 Mid-American Conference Tournament for the first time since 2007. Last season, the Huskies posted a 14-17 overall record, 6-10 in MAC play, with a team full of underclassmen that can build on the experience, especially after closing the season winning eight of the last 14 contests.
Bennett Extended through the 2017 Season
On Aug. 22, 2012, NIU Associate Vice President/Director of Athletics Jeff Compher announced a contract extension through the 2017 season for Bennett. In her first season in 2010-11, Bennett went 13-17 (7-9 MAC) to improve the win total by 30 percent overall, 75 percent in conference, from the 2009-10 team that she inherited. In her second season, she pushed the 2011-12 Huskies to one win better (14-17, 6-10 MAC) than her first year and made a splash in the MAC Tournament with a youthful roster full of nine underclassmen.
NIU Picked to Finish 4th in the MAC West
The Mid-American Conference coaches and media chose the Huskies to finish fourth in the MAC West Division for the second straight year in the MAC Preseason Poll.
NIU on TV
Sunday, Feb. 3 against Miami (OH) at 1 p.m. CT will mark NIU's lone TV appearance of the season. The game will be produced by the MAC's regional cable partner SportsTime Ohio.
On the Air
Every NIU basketball game of the 2012-13 season can be heard on the Northern Illinois Sports Network, presented by IMG. Home and away games will air on WLBK 98.9 FM and 1360 AM and Huskie All-Access at NIUHuskies.com. Home games can also be watched with live video through Huskie All-Access.