Women’s basketball wins last three

DYLAN PADY, Sports Editor | [email protected]

The UNI women’s basketball team achieved a three game winning-streak after defeating Southern Illinois (71-63), Indiana State (56-46) and Evansville (85-60) just before kicking off a three-game stretch of games played at home.

In their victory over Southern Illinois, Ellie Howell led the scoring with 17 points and five rebounds. She was able to assist her teammates with three good passes that resulted in baskets for the Panthers.

Following Howell in scoring was Mikaela Morgan with 16 points and Kennedy Kirkpatrick, who recorded nine points, two rebounds and a single assist.

Southern Illinois leaned heavily on two players, Nicole Martin and Kylie Giebelhausen, who both scored for a combined 36 points, eight rebounds and four assists. The Salukis had 14 total assists. The team was looking to feed these two players as often as they could.

The Panthers led by 19 halfway through the second quarter, but Southern Illinois came back and was able to get two points ahead of the Panthers with 10 minutes left in the game. A stronger second half of shooting allowed UNI to overcome the comeback and run away with the game.

In the first half, UNI shot 40 percent from the field and 83 percent at the charity stripe. In the second, UNI improved to 47 percent from the field and 87 percent from the free-throw line.

Their next victory was an away game against Indiana State. Each team struggled shooting. UNI shot somewhat better. The Panthers finished the game shooting 38 percent from the field and 25 percent from three. Their free throws have been consistent throughout the season, and 13 of their points came from the stripe.

Kirkpatrick led with 18 points and Megan Maahs followed with 15 points of her own.

It seemed free throws were the only shot Indiana State could make. They finished the contest shooting 16-56 from the field and 3-15 from three. Their biggest lead was four points early in the first quarter.

UNI featured a 19 point lead in the third and straight up bullied their opponents in the paint, recording 30 points off layups and floaters. The bench only scored four points, but the team stayed in the game with 18 points off Indiana State turnovers.

The Panthers’ big 25 point victory over Evansville featured four Panthers in double-digit scoring. Nicole Kroeger (19), Howell (17), Rose Simon-Ressler (10) and Maahs (10) were the conductors of a team firing on cylinders.

Getting the ball first and good passing was a great factor in their victory. 22 total assists with just three turnovers is a great statistic, and the Panthers had 11 steals and 40 rebounds compared to Evansville’s nine assists and 33 rebounds. 

UNI scored 25 points off an unimpressive 17 turnovers by Evansville and a solid effort from the Panthers’ bench, who scored 38 points.

The Panthers bodied every statistic in their big win against the Aces. Evansville made 80 percent of their free throws compared to UNI’s 61 percent.

The women’s team is scheduled to play their next three games at home and will host Drake, Illinois State and Bradley. After their home stretch, the Panthers will hit the road and play Valparaiso and Loyola before wrapping up the regular season and preparing for the MVC Tournament in the Quad Cities.