Feb. 25, 2009
Bearcats Keep MIAA Tourney Hopes Alive on Steinmeyer's 500th Win
MARYVILLE, Mo. - Northwest Missouri State tallied a season-high 23 assists and eight blocks and kept its MIAA tournament hopes alive with a 75-73 victory against Southwest Baptist tonight. The Bearcat seniors combined for 35 points in their final career home game and provided Head Coach Gene Steinmeyer his 500th career victory.
Northwest scored back-to-back three-pointers in the second half and scored on three straight possessions to cut an eight point Southwest Baptist lead to two points with 14 minutes, 42 seconds remaining. A seven-point swing during a three minute Southwest Baptist scoring drought pushed the Northwest lead to seven points with 7:49 left.
The purple Bearcats answered with their own 10-point rally to take a three-point lead with 5:44 remaining and took a six-point lead at 4:07 off a jumper from Courtney Heady. In a second half marked by small rallies for each team, Northwest capped its final rally of the night and took a one-point lead on Micaela Uriell's third three-pointer of the night with 1:55 remaining.
A free throw by Rachel Graves tied the game at 70-70 before a jumper by Rickeya McElroy put Northwest ahead for good with 1:26 left. Northwest made three of its next four free throws and claimed the 75-73 to hand the purple Bearcats their 10th straight loss.
McElroy scored a team-high 22 points on 11-of-17 shooting from the field. In two games this season against Southwest Baptist, McElroy scored 47 points and shot 71 percent from the field. She also improved her season blocked shot mark to 40 and is one away from tying Cheryl Johnson for second in all-time records.
Uriell scored 14 points and provided a career-high seven assists in her final career game in Bearcat Arena. Jessica Burton scored double-digit points for the seventh straight game with 12 tonight and matched her career-best with two blocked shots.
Meghan Brue finished one point and one rebound shy of her eighth career double-double. Her nine points moved her into 12th in career scoring records and 24 away from Julie Chadwick for 11th. She became the eighth player in program history to surpass 600 career rebounds and 1,200 career points.
Shelly Martin came within one point of her career-high with 16 points on four-of-five shooting from the three-point line. It's her best performance from the three-point line since the season-opening win against South Dakota Nov. 15.
MIAA Standings Update: Missouri Western's 79-57 loss at Central Missouri moves the Bearcats and Griffons into a tie for eighth in the MIAA standings heading into Saturday's regular season finale. A Northwest win against Missouri Southern Saturday will advance the Bearcats to Kansas City as the No. 8 seed.
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