Feb. 21, 2007
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EVANSTON, Ill. -- Tim Doyle and Kevin Coble combined for 35 points and led four Wildcats in double figures in a 67-56 win over a pesky Texas-Pan American squad Wednesday night at Welsh-Ryan Arena.
The win set a Northwestern record with 11 nonconference wins in a season.
Doyle scored 17 on 6-of-7 shooting while Coble added 18, including four 3-pointers, to go along with a game-high eight rebounds.
Both teams came out red-hot in the first half as both teams were shooting better than 60 percent 10 minutes into the game. The Broncs, however, cooled off as Northwestern took a 37-26 lead into the locker room. Doyle was the spark in the first 20 minutes for the 'Cats, scoring 12 points and hitting five-straight field goals after missing his first attempt.
"That's what he should do," head coach Bill Carmody said. "He's a fifth-year guy. He just said 'nobody's going to stop me down here'. He was even saying that in the timeout: `I can get the ball down there in the low post and do something'. You need that. We sorely missed it this year so that was a good sign."
UTPA would heat up once again after halftime and cut the NU lead to two, 44-42, as the Broncs hit four treys in the first nine minutes.
Leading by three, 49-46 with 8:14 left, the 'Cats kept their composure and went on an 8-0 run, capped off by Coble's fourth 3-pointer to put NU out in front 57-46 with 5:15 left.
"When it got close, (Coble) knocked down shots and wasn't afraid to take them," Carmody added. "He wasn't afraid to take them when we had the lead and he shot a little quickly. He'll have to learn. It's great because he's been working and he's spent a lot of the time the last few days working."
UTPA would cut the lead back down to six, but Northwestern, who hit 21-of-24 from the free throw line on the night, hit eight-straight from the stripe in the final 1:13. Jason Okrzesik, who finished with 11 points, was 9-of-9 from the line. Jeff Ryan hit 6-of-7 from the stripe and finished with 10 points.
Ivan Tolic scored six points in 18 minutes of action. He has now hit his last nine field goal attempts.
Northwestern did a much better job on the boards tonight, limiting UTPA's second chance opportunities as both teams grabbed 24 caroms.
Brian Burrell led UTPA with 24 points and hit 6-of-9 from long range. Paul Stoll led the team with 10 assists.
Northwestern is back in action this Saturday when they host Purdue. Game time is 11:15 a.m. CT.