Women’s basketball defeats Mizzou & Iowa, advance to 4-0

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Women’s basketball defeats Mizzou & Iowa, advance to 4-0

TONI FORTMANN

TONI FORTMANN

TONI FORTMANN

BRIELLE KIEWIET, Sports Writer

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The UNI women’s basketball team continued their strong start to the season with a 78-73 road win at the University of Missouri on Wednesday, Nov. 13, along with an 88-66 home victory against the Iowa Hawkeyes on Sunday.

“Winning on the road is extremely hard,” head coach Tanya Warren said. “You have to make sure you pack your toughness hat and your willingness to get down and dirty, because it’s a battle.”

Wednesday night saw a 78-73 battle in the first-ever win over Mizzou for the Panthers and the second-ever win over an SEC school since defeating Arkansas in 2001.

Karli Rucker and Megan Maahs led the Panthers offensively, scoring 21 points and 18 points, respectively. The game was neck and neck throughout the first half until UNI extended the lead to ten for a 40-37 lead going into halftime.

“I love the versatility of this team,” Warren said. “I love the ability to go to our bench. I like the different lineups we can play together. We just have to continue to come to work everyday and continue to get better and understand what allows this team to be good.”

Fans were on the edge of their seats as both teams kept trading leads throughout the second half. A pair of back-to-back three pointers gave the Panthers a slight edge with a one-point lead at the end of the third quarter.

Rucker came out strong in the fourth with two three-point shots for her sixth consecutive game scoring double figures, helping the Panthers edge out the 78-73 victory.

“We’re going to defend, that’s what we do, and we’re going to continue to do that,” Warren said. “If we can continue to get better offensively in terms of the execution, taking care of the basketball and control what we can control, this team is going to continue to get better and better.”

The Panthers did just that on Sunday afternoon against the Iowa Hawkeyes in an 88-66 complete team win

UNI jumped out to a 45-31 lead heading into halftime and wouldn’t look back to cap off the 22-point victory.

Kam Finley led the way with 20 points, followed by Abby Gerrits and Kristina Cavey with 15 and 14 points, respectively.  Nicole Kroeger added 13 points, going 3-5 from behind the arc as she was the fourth player in double figures on the day.

Up next, the Panthers will take on Northwest Missouri State on Sunday, Nov. 24 with tip-off set for 3 p.m. before heading to Las Vegas the following week.

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