UNI splits road trip against Lady Bears, Salukis



Emerson Green (4) had an outstanding game for UNI in their victory over Southern Illinois, finishing with a team-high 26 points.

ADAM JOHNSON, Sports Writer

UNI women’s basketball went on a quick road trip starting on Thursday, Jan. 28. They started by traveling to Springfield, Mo. to go up against Missouri State. This was a quality matchup, as both teams were among the top of the conference. This was a close matchup, but it was the Lady Bears that got the best of the Panthers. 

The first half of the game went toe to toe over the majority. With five minutes left in the second quarter, the game was tied at 28. Neither team had been able to mount any sort of a run to this point, but the Panthers were able to come up with one at the perfect time. The Panthers went on a 9-2 run and took a 37-30 lead into the break. 

The second half opened up with a lot of the back and forth that was seen throughout the majority of the first half. The Panthers were able to slightly grow their lead up to 14 points, and it seemed like they might pull away from Missouri State. However, to finish the quarter, the Lady Bears managed to score five straight to bring it back to the nine point game that it was to start the quarter. 

To start the fourth, the Lady Bears scored five more and cut the lead down to just four for the Panthers. Not long after the Lady Bears went on another run. The score was 61-55, but a 7-0 run by the Lady Bears gave them a 62-61 lead. The Panthers gained a small lead back, and were up 67-64 with just under four minutes left. The Panthers would never score again, and the Lady Bears scored seven, giving them a 71-67 victory.

The tough loss for the Panthers on Thursday meant they needed a big rebound on Saturday, Jan. 28. The Panthers were on the road yet again, and this time in Carbondale, Ill., for a date with Southern Illinois. In what was a high scoring affair, the Panthers were able to come out victorious.

This game started similarly to that of the game against Missouri State, as both teams were trading baskets. Scoring was at a premium, as there was not much time that the ball was not going through the basket. With 20 seconds left in the first quarter, Maya McDermott made a layup to give the Panthers a 25-22 lead. In the second quarter, the scoring did not slow down. The Panthers got up to as big as an eight point lead, but the Salukis did not let the lead get any bigger. At the break, the Panthers led 48-42.

The third quarter was all Panthers. They had a narrow 52-50 lead with about seven minutes remaining in the quarter, but then they started to take over. They ended the quarter on a 20-8 run, and had a convincing 72-58 lead going into the fourth. The Panthers were able to sustain the lead in the final quarter of play, not leading by any less than nine points. The lead grew to as much as 17 points late in the game, and the Panthers came away with the victory, 94-81. The 94 points for the Panthers marked the most they have scored in a game all season.

The Panthers will play next on Wednesday, Feb. 1, when Drake comes to town. When the teams met earlier this season in Des Moines, UNI came out on top, 70-69, thanks to a game winner from McDermott.