The Northern Illinois University women’s basketball team dropped its regular season finale, 58-50, to Western Michigan at University Arena Wednesday night.
“We played hard,” said NIU head coach Kathi Bennett.
“We played well enough. We just needed some shots to fall. We had great energy. I thought it was a really good game. It was one of our better games. Just down the stretch, we needed to make plays.”
The Huskies fall to 7-22 on the season and 2-14 in the Mid-American Conference, while Western Michigan improves to 10-19 overall, 6-10 in league play. Northern Illinois will enter the 2013 MAC Women’s Basketball Tournament as the No. 10 seed and will travel to Buffalo to face No. 7 seed Buffalo Saturday.
In a game that saw seven ties and five lead changes, Western Michigan’s second half shooting proved to be the difference as the Broncos pulled away from the Huskies in the final nine minutes of the game.
WMU shot 48 percent from the field in the second half, including 62.5 percent from beyond the arc. With the score tied 32-32 with 11:32 left to play in the game, the Broncos outscored Northern Illinois, 11-4, during a three-and-half minute stretch to take a 43-36 lead.
Trailing, 54-50, with 1:15 left NIU had a chance to pull within two when Alexis Lindstrom (Howards Grove, Wis./Howards Grove) stole the ball from Aurielle Anderson. Unfortunately for the Huskies, her layup rimmed out and Western came up with the rebound and scored its final four points from the line.
Three Broncos finished in double figures with Jazmine Windham leading the way with 18 points. Windham did much of her damage from beyond the arc, going 4-for-5 from three point territory and 6-of-7 from the field. Corie Buchanan scored 12 points, while Julia Henson tallied 11.
Amanda Corral (Hobart, Ind./Hobart) led the way for the Huskies tallying a double-double and NIU’s second of the season, scoring 18 points and hauling in 12 rebounds. Her 12 rebounds is a career-high for the sophomore.
Northern Illinois played well in the first half. The Huskies outshot 39.3 percent to 38.5 and led by nine with 5:56 left in the half. However, a 14-2 Bronco run gave WMU a 25-22 lead before a Lindstrom three-pointer tied the game at half.
“We’re playing good basketball,” Bennett said. “Our last three games have been really solid. Going into Buffalo, hopefully we’re healthy.”
Fans can hear the all the action of the Huskies’ first round game with Buffalo live on Huskie All-Access . Tip-off is set for 1 p.m. CT.
For more information on NIU women’s basketball and Huskie athletics, visit www.niuhuskies.com.