Huge second half propels Panthers past Braves, 83-64



Grace Boffeli (42) led the way for UNI in both scoring and rebounding in the win over Bradley, finishing with 17 points and seven rebounds.


On Friday, Dec. 30, UNI began Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) play, traveling to the Renaissance Coliseum in Peoria, Ill. to take on Bradley. Despite a slow start to the game, the Panthers exploded for 34 points in the third quarter en route to an 83-64 victory to move to 1-0 in conference play.

Both teams struggled for control in the opening quarter, with neither team finding any separation from their opponent. The biggest lead of the quarter was six, and after 10 minutes UNI led the Braves 18-14.

Bradley scored the first six points of the second quarter to take a 20-18 lead, which led to both teams trading the advantage throughout the second period of play. A layup from Maya McDermott allowed UNI to reclaim the lead late in the quarter, 28-27, but another quick burst of scoring from Bradley gave them the lead at halftime, 35-30.

The third quarter is when things really turned around for UNI. The Panthers quickly built up their lead, leading by as much as 23 points thanks to great shooting and a strong defensive effort. After the third quarter concluded, UNI led 64-44, outscoring the Braves in the quarter 34-9.

The fourth quarter was all about maintaining the lead for UNI, something they had no problem doing. The Panthers never let Bradley get closer than 17 points in the final 10 minutes, and UNI came away with an emphatic victory, 83-64.

Grace Boffeli led the way for the Panthers, scoring 17 points and grabbing seven rebounds, both of which led the team. Two other Panthers scored in double figures, with Maya McDermott pitching in 15 points, alongside 10 points off the bench from Cailyn Morgan. McDermott and Emerson Green both dished out six assists to tie for the team lead.

The Braves were led by Alex Rouse with 16 points. Isis Fitch added 11 points and 12 rebounds for the first double-double of her career.

“It was a great road win,” Head Coach Tanya Warren said after the game. “I thought we had a slow start, especially the second quarter. I thought the third quarter we came out and we really defended. We got stops to allow us to get out in transition and get some easy buckets.”

With the win, UNI improves to 6-4 on the season and 1-0 in the MVC. The Panthers will be back in action on Sunday, Jan. 1, staying on the road and traveling to Normal, Ill. for a matchup with Illinois State.