Saturday's Women's Basketball Results

Updated 1/27/2013


Saturday's Women's Basketball Results
Toledo 44, Northern Illinois 42
Ball State 77, Ohio 46
Buffalo 63, Western Michigan 44
Central Michigan 92, Akron 69
Courtesy of Home MAC Sports Information Departments
Toledo 44, Northern Illinois 42
DeKALB, Ill. - A tightly-contested Mid-American Conference West Division tussle against the preseason league favorite Toledo left Northern Illinois one possession short in a 44-42 loss Saturday afternoon at the Convocation Center. The Huskies (5-14, 0-6 MAC) had two chances to win it in the last 20 seconds but failed to get a shot on rim against the stout Rockets (17-2, 5-1 MAC) defense.
"It was a very hard-fought game, very physical," said NIU Head Coach Kathi Bennett. "I don't think we could've played much better defensively against a good offensive team. I saw some positive signs on offense. We are really trying to spread the floor and trying to be active with our movement."
Neither team imposed its will in the game as there were eight lead changes and six ties with neither team holding more than a five point lead. It was going to come down to who had the ball last. It was the Huskies who had that chance but missed on the opportunity to cash in.
Down 43-42 with just under a minute to play, NIU had a great chance to take the lead. Natecia Augusta (Peoria, Ill./Limestone) had the ball in the mid-post with eight seconds left on the shot clock and a one-on-one situation against her defender, but she passed the ball out to Amanda Corral (Hobart, Ind./Hobart). NIU's leading scorer was then forced to get a shot off between two taller defenders and came up short on a step-back jumper for a shot clock violation with 18 seconds left in the game.
After fouling to put the Rockets to the free throw line, Andola Dortch missed the first and made the second with 8.4 seconds remaining. The Huskies inbounded to Corral and the sophomore raced up the court to look for a scoring chance for her or teammate Satavia Taylor (Bolingbrook, Ill./Bolingbrook/Loyola) but ended up picking up her dribble on the wing in a moment of hesitation, allowing her to be trapped and not get rid of the ball for a pass or shot as the clock expired.
"That last play was on me," Bennett said. "We talked about having 8.4 seconds left during the timeout and to push the ball. I probably should've called timeout to run a play from the sideline with about five seconds left."
Both teams shot 37 percent from the field and almost matched in turnovers (NIU 17, UT 16). However, Toledo capitalized more on the turnovers (13-7 edge in points off turnovers) and used its size advantage to rack up a 33-25 rebounding advantage, including a 9-4 edge on the offensive glass. The size difference led to a 20-10 discrepancy in points in the paint and 6-0 edge in second chance points for the Rockets.
In the first half, Taylor's 11 points helped the Huskies grab a 19-18 lead with 4:37 left. But on NIU's next six possessions the Huskies had three missed shots and three turnovers while UT ran off six straight points. Taylor ended the drought with a left-handed floater in the lane as time expired to make it a 24-21 UT lead at half.
The Huskies were down by five early in the second half but never let Toledo separate any further and fought back to take the lead four different times. The last of which came on a three by Taylor with 1:54 left. NIU's 42-41 lead only lasted 14 seconds, though, as Inma Zanoguera slashed through the lane for a layup that proved to be the game-winner after NIU missed on its chances in the last minute of the game.
Taylor led the way for NIU with 14 points and was 3-for-4 on three-pointers. Corral also reached double figures with 13 and was 2-for-3 on threes. Overall, NIU was 6-for-9 from downtown, while Toledo was just 2-for-12. The Rockets made up for it at the free throw line, however, going 8-for-14 while NIU was 4-for-6.
NIU, who held Toledo to its lowest point total of the season, continues play against the MAC West Division as the Huskies travel to Eastern Michigan for a 6 p.m. CT contest on Thursday, January 31.
Ball State 77, Ohio 46
MUNCIE, Ind. - The Ball State women's basketball team won its third straight Mid-American Conference contest with a 77-46 defeat over Ohio Saturday afternoon in Worthen Arena. 
With the win the Cardinals improve to 8-11 overall and 5-1 in league action, while Ohio dropped to 5-13 overall and 0-6 in MAC action.
The 5-1 conference start for the Cardinals is the best since the 2008-09 season when Ball State started out 4-0 in the MAC.
In a game where the Cardinals shot 52 percent from the field and held its opponent to a 25 percent shooting mark, Ball State never let Ohio lead or tie the game.
Brandy Woody led the Cardinals with 23 points after scoring 17 in the first half, plus added a team high six assists and managed two steals.  Three other Cardinals - Brittany Carter, Shanee' Jackson and Shelbie Justice - scored in double digits.  Carter managed 15 points and four rebounds, plus a team best four steals.  Jackson scored 13 points, grabbed a team-high seven rebounds and tallied three steals.  Justice scored 11 points, grabbed six boards, dished out two assists and registered two steals.
The Cardinals opened the game with a 20-4 run over the Bobcats and never looked back.  The closest the Bobcats would get the entire contest was four (26-22) at the 6:55 mark in the first half.
Ball State ended the half up 42-27 over Ohio with Woody and Carter both in double figures.   The Cardinals built their lead as high as 34 with 4:23 to play in the game before coasting to the victory.  Ball State held the Bobcats to a 17 percent shooting mark from the field in the second half as Ohio made only 5-of-29 field goals.
The Ball State women's basketball team continues Mid-American Conference action when it travels to Western Michigan Thursday for a 7 p.m. tipoff in University Arena.
Buffalo 63, Western Michigan 44
BUFFALO, NY - The University at Buffalo women's basketball team allowed just 14 first-half points, en route to a 63-44 victory over Western Michigan on Saturday afternoon.  The Bulls had three players in double figures, while senior Nicki Hopkins played 40 minutes for the first time in her career.  The win improves Buffalo's record to 4-2 in the MAC, tying its win total in MAC play from last season.
The first half was a series of runs as the Bulls began the game on a 9-0 run, only to be answered by Western Michigan's 12-0 run.  However, the lead would be short lived for the Broncos as the Bulls turned up the defensive intensity and went on a 19-2 run over the final 10:17 of the first half.  The Bulls held Western Michigan scoreless for over nine minutes in the half and took a 28-14 lead into the half.  The 14 points allowed by the Bulls were the fewest allowed all season in a half.
Buffalo opened up a 20-point advantage in the second half following a three pointer from Hopkins, which gave the Bulls a 46-26 advantage with 9:41 left.  The Broncos again pulled within 14 at 51-37, but the Bulls answered on a 6-0 run, capped off on back-to-back fast break layups, first from sophomore Christa Baccas and a second freshman Mackenzie Loesing, putting the Bulls back up by 20, 57-37.  Buffalo went on to take its largest lead of the game at 21 following a three-point play from Baccas with 1:34 left in regulation.
"I thought our intensity was excellent today and that translated from the intensity we had in practice the last few days," said head coach Felisha Legette-Jack.  "Despite not getting into the game today, I thought Kaila Callender really pushed the team in practice and her energy and it got us ready for today."
Loesing finished with a game-high 15 points, adding four rebounds, two assists and five steals.  Baccas had her fourth double-double of the season with 14 points and 13 rebounds in 38 minutes of action.  Redshirt junior Cherridy Thornton had 11 points and five rebounds off the bench.
Redshirt sophomore Kristen Sharkey finished with nine points and 10 rebounds, while junior Margeux Gupilan had eight points, six rebounds, five assists and a steal.  Hopkins, who picked up her first start of the season, played all 40 minutes and finished with six points and an assist.
After committing 31 turnovers and sending their opponents to the free throw line 39 times in the last game, the Bulls cut down on both numbers and instead played solid defensive allowing just 44 points and recording nine steals.  Through UB's first six conference games, it has now allowed less than 59 points five times and less than 45 points twice.
After playing four of the first six games at home, the Bulls will hit the road for what will be six of the next eight games on the road.  That stretch begins on Thursday afternoon at Miami (OH).  It will be Kid's Day in Oxford with a special 12:00 pm start time.
Central Michigan 92, Akron 69
MOUNT PLEASANT - Sophomore Crystal Bradford scored a career-high 31 points and Central Michigan shot 53.6 percent from the floor to improve to 6-0 in Mid-American Conference play with a 92-69 win over Akron Saturday afternoon.
The Chippewas (12-7, 6-0 MAC) knocked down 37 of their 69 attempts in the game and scored a season-high 54 points in the paint, but it was defense that proved key as they held the highest scoring team in the conference to just 34.3 percent shooting (23-for-67).
Trailing by one after a three by Akron's Carly Young, 13-12, the Chippewas were able to break the game open with a 12-2 run. Sophomore Jessica Green sparked the run with a corner three on an assist from Bradford and returned the favor on the Chippewas' next possession as she found Bradford for a three of her own. Senior Jessica Schroll scored four straight and Bradford stepped in front of a pass at midcourt and finished on the break, forcing the Zips (12-7, 3-3 MAC) into a 30-second timeout.
A layup by Bradford with 6:52 to play in the first half pushed the Chippewas' lead to double digits, 37-26, and senior Brandie Baker finished on the baseline with 27 seconds left in the half to give CMU its largest lead to that point, 51-33.
The hot shooting continued in the second half when junior Taylor Johnson knocked down a three from the corner to extend the lead to 60-41 with 16:30 to play and the Chippewas pushed their lead into the 20s on a layup by Baker at the 15:55 mark, 62-41.
After the Maroon and Gold grabbed their largest lead of the game on a jumper by Green with 7:11 to go in the contest, 79-53, the Zips used some hot shooting of their own to claw back into the game. The Zips pulled as close to 14 behind three-point shooting by Taylor Ruper, but Bradford took over down the stretch to secure the win.
The three-time defending MAC West Player of the Week scored six straight points to extend the lead back to 20, the final two of which came on a spin move through three Akron defenders. She then found Jalisa Olive in the corner for yet another three, helping put the senior into double digits for the sixth time this season with 10 points.
Schroll and Green also finished in double figures for the Chippewas, scoring 16 and 15 respectively, while Baker finished with eight points, six boards and five assists.
The Chippewas will look to remain perfect in MAC play when they host Kent State Thursday at 7 p.m.