Bowling Green opened the game with an 11-1 run Wednesday night and never looked back, earning a 57-41 victory over Northern Illinois at the NIU Convocation Center.
The Falcons shot 52.2 percent (12-of-23) from the field in the first half en route to the road victory.
Sophomore wing Abdel Nader (Skokie, Ill./Niles North) led the Huskies with 12 points and eight rebounds.
The Huskies out-rebounded the Falcons, 38-34, in the contest, but could not overcome the shooting edge held by the Falcons. Bowling Green (9-13, 4-5 MAC) shot 43.1 percent (22-of-51) in the contest to just 27.5 percent (14-of-51) for NIU.
“Bowling Green got out to a great start,” said NIU head coach Mark Montgomery.
“They fed off that energy of some makes early in the game and it seemed like we were a step slow. We didn’t have enough defensive intensity early in the game and it is tough when you have to play from behind. We didn’t have the best shooting performance tonight either, so that hurt. You have to give credit to Bowling Green, they came out and gave the first punch, we just didn’t have enough fight in that first half and it cost us.”
The Falcons made their first three shots of the game to take an early 8-0 lead. A triple by Luke Kraus pushed the Bowling Green lead to 11-1 just three-and-a-half minutes into the contest.
Northern Illinois (5-16, 3-6 MAC) played Bowling Green nearly even the rest of the half, but the Falcons took a 15-point lead, 30-15, into the intermission.
Bowling Green pushed its lead to as much as 27 in the opening minutes of the second half, but the Huskies continued to fight. A 13-3 NIU run midway through the half helped the Huskies cut the deficit nearly in half, but the deficit proved too much for Northern Illinois to overcome.
A’uston Calhoun led all scorers with 15 points and a game-high 12 rebounds. Richaun Holmes added 11 points and three blocks off the bench for the Falcons.
The Huskies will return to the road on Saturday, Feb. 9, when they travel to Western New York to take on Buffalo. Game time against the Bulls is scheduled for noon CT.
For more information on NIU men’s basketball and Huskie athletics, visit www.niuhuskies.com.