Michigan Tech Women Surprise Northern Michigan
This story and photo courtesy of Michigan Tech Athletics. Click the AUDIO button to hear RRN post-game interview with Wildcat Coach Casey Thosuand.
MARQUETTE, Mich. -- The Michigan Tech women's basketball team used a strong first half to outlast Northern Michigan, 71-58, inside the Berry Events Center on Saturday afternoon.
Michigan Tech elevates to 9-8 overall and 5-4 in the loop, while Northern Michigan falls to 12-6 overall and 6-3 in the league.
"I was super proud of our team and the way we came out," head coach Sam Clayton mentioned. "Emma and Sara hitting those 3s early was the biggest key to the game early and that opened up the paint for everyone else, which was a huge difference. The offense was clicking, but more importantly, our defense was great from start to finish. We made them earn it and I'm super proud of this team."
The Huskies led from the 8:14 mark in the first quarter, when Sara Dax connected from long range for the first of five 3-pointers in the opening quarter. Dax followed it up with a second triple on the next possession to make it 8-4 before Emma Anderson came off the bench, knocking down back-to-back 3-pointers herself, seeing the Black & Golds lead swell to eight points (14-6).
Anderson and Dax combined for 16 points in the opening quarter, with Isabella Lenz hitting the final 3-pointer of the quarter with 32 seconds to play, before ultimately closing out the first 10 minutes ahead 27-16.
The Huskies held the Wildcats to just nine points in the second quarter, with an and-one by Alyssa Wypych bringing MTU a 16 point advantage heading into halftime up 41-26.
Wypych scored a team-leading five points in the second quarter, while Katelyn Meister chipped in a pair of jumpers.
Northern Michigan put its best quarter together out of the halftime break, outscoring Michigan Tech 17-10, cutting the deficit to seven points. Tessa Leece pushed the lead back to nine with a nice putback jumpshot following a missed layup by Lenz (51-42).
The Huskies shifted gears in the final 7:36 to play after the Wildcats cut the lead back down to single digits with a tough jumper from Makaylee Kuhn. From that point, MTU would sustain a double digit lead, growing to as much as 13-points five times down the stretch.
Michigan Tech's largest lead of the game came in crunch time when the Wildcats were forced to foul, seeing two free-throws from Lenz make it 70-55 with 40 seconds to play.
Rondorf would score the final point for the Huskies from the charity stripe, before Michigan Tech dribbled out the clock to mark the Huskies 14th consecutive win over the 'Cats.
The Huskies once again produced a well rounded attack, with Meister leading the way with 16 points. Dax is now officially on 1,000 career point watch, with her 14 point outing bringing her to 995 points. Lenz (13) and Rondorf (10) also scored in double-figures. Meister and Rondorf grabbed a team-high eight boards.
Makaylee Kuhn led the Wildcats with 12 points, while Alyssa Nimz recorded a team-high seven rebound.