Dec. 4, 2004
Coach Carmody quotes in PDF Format
Chicago State Coach Kevin Jones quotes in PDF Format
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EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) - Vedran Vukusic and Mohamed Hachad each scored 18
points Saturday night to lead Northwestern to a 78-53 victory over Chicago
The Wildcats (2-4), who had lost four straight entering the contest, allowed the Cougars to score eight points on their first three possessions and take an 8-1 lead. After that, though, it was all Northwestern.
T.J. Parker drained a three-pointer, setting off a 10-point run that gave NU the lead at 11-8. That streak continued until the 'Cats were up 29-14 with 6:46 left in the half, and the advantage would stretch all the way to 20 (46-26) before the teams went into the locker rooms.
The second half was more of the same, as NU never let Chicago State (0-4) get closer than 17 and led by more than 20 for the final 13 minutes of the contest.
In the team's sixth game of the season, Northwestern finally showed signs of being the team that has been predicted to be one of the sleepers nationally and a postseason contender. The 'Cats shot 54 percent from the field, draining seven three-pointers, and had 22 assists on 28 buckets while turning the ball over just 10 times (three in the first half).
"I though we had some energy out there tonight that we definitely have not been showing up to this point," said NU head coach Bill Carmody. "They came right out and hit their first two three-pointers, and before you know it we are down 8-1. But I really felt like we kept our composure."
In addition to Vukusic and Hachad, Parker scored 14 points. The other starters, Davor Duvancic and Tim Doyle, left their mark as well. Duvancic had a career-high six assists, while Doyle dropped five -- some of them spectacular.
Hachad was particularly noteworthy. The energetic junior tied a career high with his point total, draining 7-of-11 shots including an emphatic slam-dunk putback that brought the crowd to its feet late in the second half. Hachad also had seven boards, two assists and two steals.
"Mohamed really came to play tonight," said Carmody. "He has not been there in the early part of the season, and he was tonight. He was just playing up and over the rim, getting rebounds, forcing steals. Hopefully this game will help him feel good and get us on the right track."
Due to final exams at the University, Northwestern is now off until Wednesday, Dec. 15, when the Wildcats host DePaul at 8 p.m. CST in a game that will be televised nationally on ESPN2.