Dec. 13, 2009
MANHATTAN, Kan. -- Northwestern used double-digit performances from Amy Jaeschke (Wilmette, Ill./New Trier), Kristin Cartwright (Lake Forest, Ill./Lake Forest) and Brittany Orban (North Canton, Ohio/Hoover) to defeat Kansas State, 53-50, in a thriller Sunday afternoon in front of 3,424 fans at Bramlage Coliseum. With the victory, the Wildcats improve to 7-2 on the season.
The win was arguably one of Northwestern's biggest road victories in recent memory: they defeated a team that has made eight straight postseason appearances and rarely loses in Bramlage Coliseum. The Wildcats handed K-State just their 22nd nonconference home loss in 142 games since they moved into Bramlage 22 years ago. Under current head coach Deb Patterson, who is in her 14th season in Manhattan, Kansas State suffered just their ninth home nonconference defeat (now 83-9).
Northwestern came out of the gates on point, connecting on 50 percent of its looks through the first eight minutes, thanks largely to a 3-of-4 performance from Jaeschke who recorded six of the Wildcats' first 11 points.
A triple by Kendall Hackney (Cincinnati, Ohio/Mount Notre Dame) gave NU its largest lead of the game, a seven-point advantage with 11:28 on the clock. But Kansas State rallied to within 16-13 over the next two minutes before Northwestern went on a 9-2 run to take a 25-19 lead at the 5:49 mark.
Kansas State outscored NU 8-4 over the rest of the frame to set the halftime score at 29-24. Jaeschke led all scorers with 14 points while Cartwright added seven and Hackney contributed six. Northwestern shot 44 percent from the field and capitalized on KSU's lack of height down low, converting on 16 points in the paint.
An Orban basket to open the second half gave NU an eight-point lead but Kansas State outscored the Wildcats 9-4 over the next three minutes to notch the game at 33 a piece. A triple from Orban spearheaded a 7-0 Northwestern spurt which gave the 'Cats a 40-33 lead at the 13:46 mark.
The Wildcats built a 10-point advantage over the next three and a half minutes, thanks to a two free-throws by Dannielle Diamant (Las Vegas, Nev./Bishop Gorman) and a bucket by Hackney, but an Ashley Sweat triple cut the lead to 46-37 with under nine minutes remaining.
Three minutes elapsed before a jumper from Jaeschke just inside the three-point line gave Northwestern a 48-37 lead. Kansas State outscored NU 9-2 over the next three-plus minutes to cut the Wildcat lead down to four -- 50-46 -- with 2:53 on the clock.
A huge steal by Cartwright resulted in a layup and a six-point Northwestern lead with 1:14 left. Kansas State cut the lead to two, 52-50, with 22 seconds left but Hackney intercepted a pass on the home team's next possession with 10 ticks on the clock. A free-throw by Beth Marshall (Fishers, Ind./Hamilton Southeastern) set NU's lead at three and a last-second hoist by K-State fell short and gave NU its seventh win of the season. The victory equals the 'Cats' total number of wins all last season.
Jaeschke led NU with 16 points, while Cartwright chipped in 13 points and five boards. Orban came up big in the second half and finished with 12 points and eight rebounds. As a team, Northwestern held Kansas State to just 32 percent shooting from the field and out-rebounded the Wildcats 36-32.
The Wildcats are next in action on Thursday, Dec. 17 when they host Arkansas in a noon contest at Welsh-Ryan Arena.