January 29, 2005
Northwest Turns Corner with 81-67 Win Over Southwest Baptist
MARYVILLE, Mo. -- Northwest Missouri State started its last half of the conference season today with an 81-67 win over Southwest Baptist. Ashely Poptanycz paced the Bearcats with a career-high 24 points and 13 rebounds recording her sixth double-double on the season.
Northwest improved its record to 10-11 overall and 3-7 in the MIAA while SBU dropped to 8-11 overall and 2-8 in conference play.
The first 20 minutes started out slow as both teams combined for 0-10 from the field to begin the game. Northwest's Meghan Blay made the first shot with 16:47 on the clock. The 'Cats went ahead by seven points in the next two and a half minutes but Southwest Baptist rallied back and took the 22-21 lead at the nine-minute mark. Northwest went on to a 19-11 spurt to close out the first half with a 40-33 advantage.
The 'Cats had stellar shooting from the field during the first half with 18-33 (54.5 percent). SBU shot only 13-35 from the field (37.1 percent) but kept up with Northwest in other areas. Both teams had three steals, turned the ball over seven times and had 10 assists. Northwest pulled down 20 boards compared to Southwest Baptist's 19.
Poptanycz had already put up 14 points and eight rebounds before halftime along with teammate Laura Friederich' eight points.
Northwest went on a 6-1 run to begin the second stanza giving the 'Cats a 46-34 edge. Their lead was extended to 16 points with 11:26 left in the game. SBU crept back to within eight points but lost steam and fell behind by 16 points once again, with less than a minute left. Free throws accounted for 10 of Northwest's last 12 points and helped the 'Cats gain the 81-67 victory.
Shooting remained Northwest's strength as they finished making 47.8 percent (32-67) of its shots from the field, the 'Cats best percentage this season. The 'Cats improved in other areas during the second half. They out-rebounded SBU 46-39, had two less turnovers than Southwest Baptist (13-15), grabbed two more steals than their foes (7-5) and had 18 assists compared to SBU's 15.
Southwest Baptist shot 36.9 percent (24-65) from the field and had five players with 10 or more points. Casey Beavers had 12 rebounds and 11 points for her second double-double on the year.
Laura Friederich ended the day with 18 points and eight rebounds while Meghan Blay scored 14 points, pulled down six rebounds, and had seven assists.
Northwest will have a rematch of last Wednesday's game versus No. 15 Central Missouri State on Wed., Feb. 2 at 5:30 p.m. The Jennies defeated the 'Cats last week, 78-72.
For more information, please contact:
Phillip Dowden, Media Relations/Sports Information
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