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Northwest Bearcats

Press Release

December 30, 2004

Northwest Wins MIAA-Opener at Southwest Baptist 96-89 in Overtime

BOLIVAR, Mo. - A decisive 8-0 run in overtime lifted the Northwest Missouri State women's basketball team (8-4, 1-0 MIAA) to a 96-89 MIAA-opening victory tonight against Southwest Baptist (6-3, 0-0 MIAA) at the Myers Sport Center. Sophomore Katie O'Grady scored five straight during the decisive game-winning stretch en route to a career-high 21 points - she posted all but three points in the final 20 minutes.

Northwest, who has won five straight in the series with SBU, travels to Missouri-Rolla on Monday, Jan. 3 for a 5:30 p.m. tip-off.

Much of the first half was an offensive affair as the teams combined for 76 points - the score was tied 38-38. Northwest held its biggest lead at 31-21 with 5:31 left in the first stanza. A layup by Mandi Schumacher capped a 11-4 spurt. However, the hosts went on a 17-7 run to tie the score up at the half.

In the first half, Northwest forced nine first-half turnovers and shot 40 percent (16-of-40) overall. Southwest hit on 48.3 percent (14-of-29) nailing six-of-11 (.545) from beyond the arc.

Out of the locker room, Southwest went on a 17-8 run to take a 55-46 lead with 13:18 remaining in the second stanza. Two free throws by Meghan Blay and one of four three-pointer's by O'Grady brought the guests to within four at 55-51.

Northwest came back to tie the score on a Meghan Brue free throw with 2:01 left. With the score knotted at 72-72, SBU's Jennifer Clymore hit a trey to give her club a 75-72 edge.

Four consecutive foul shots by O'Grady gave Northwest a 76-75 lead with :34 left. A one-of-two free throw effort by Gwyn Smith under 20 seconds left tied the score up at 76-76. A Northwest attempt by Chelsea Ernzen as time ran out fell short as both clubs went to overtime.

Back-to-back trifecta's by Laura Friederich and O'Grady handed Northwest a five-point cushion at 84-79 with 2:46 left in overtime. The NMSU Bearcats held on for the overtime conference win.

Ashely Poptancyz ended with her fourth double-double of the season with 12 points and 11 rebounds. Friederich ended with 13 ponts, three assists and three steals. Four other Northwest players finished in double-digit scoring.

As a team, Northwest went 33-of-73 (.452) from the field and 22-of-28 (.786) from the foul line. Southwest was 32-of-70 (.457) overall and 12-of-26 (.462) from beyond the arc. Northwest held a 47-38 rebounding advantage and outscored the Lady Bearcats 22-13 from the charity stripe.

Southwest was led in scoring with 22 points from Smith as she added 15 rebounds. Clymore chipped in 18 points and Ashley Bland had 15.

NOTES: Northwest's Kalena Kenney and Mandi Schumacher earned their first career starts tonight - the previous 11 games Northwest had the same five starters…In the overall series, Northwest tied the record at 17-17…SW Baptist, who averages 5.9 three-pointers per game, totaled six by halftime…The 'Cats of Northwest force an average of 23.7 turnovers per game - they created 17 Southwest turnovers tonight…Northwest entered the bonus situation with 9:05 remaining in the second half…The 96 Northwest points is the most since a 104-71 win against Mt. Mercy on Dec. 6, 2003…Northwest held a 47-13 scoring advantage from its bench.

For more information, please contact:

Media Relations Department, Northwest Athletics | 660.562.1118 | Fax: 660.562.1582

Northwest Athletics
Lamkin Activity Center | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468