Dec. 21, 2013
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Three NU freshmen combined for 48 of Northwestern’s 72 points as the Wildcats took out IUPUI, 72-61 Saturday afternoon at Welsh-Ryan Arena. Freshman point guard Ashley Deary had a career high 21 points and matched her career best with nine assists. Freshman forwards Nia Coffey and Christen Inman contributed 14 and 13 points, respectively. Sophomore guard Maggie Lyon also chipped in 10 points.
NU forced IUPUI into 21 turnovers, which led to 18 Wildcat points, while finishing with just seven miscues on its own. NU also had 13 steals, including five from Lyon and three each by Inman and Deary.
Northwestern jumped out to an 8-2 lead to start the game with Nia Coffey and Ashley Deary combining for the first points. IUPUI kept the game close throughout the half with the Wildcats leading by no more than a few points. Despite a Jaguars’ scoring drought of more than four minutes, NU could not jump out to a sizeable lead.
The Wildcats were strong on defense in the first half, forcing 15 IUPUI turnovers and had 11 steals. Lyon recorded NU’s 11th steal of the half, which led to an easy bucket by Inman to give Northwestern its largest lead of the frame at 27-19 with 3:55 remaining.
The Jaguars clawed back in and came within two at 27-25 and after their fifth 3-pointer of the game and came within two again as the teams went into the break with NU ahead 30-28.
The Wildcats dominated portions of the stat sheet, including a 10-0 clip on fastbreak points, 24-11 advantage on points in the paint and 12-2 lead in points off turnovers. IUPUI had the 30-15 advantage on rebounds, including 12-5 clip on offensive rebounds but the Jaguars were only able to convert that into a narrow 9-8 lead in second-chance points.
Deary posted a career high in the first half alone with 12 points on 5-of-7 from the field. She also added three rebounds, two assists and three steals. Deary, Inman and Maggie Lyon each had three of NU’s 11 steals in the opening frame.
IUPUI scored the first bucket of the second half to tie things up at 30-30 and then took its first lead of the game at 34-32. The Wildcats responded though, going on a 9-0 run as Inman scored five-straight points and Coffey added back-to-back buckets to give them the 41-34 lead and eventually jumped ahead by double-digits
Foul trouble plagued the Wildcats in the second half as IUPUI was in the bonus early in the frame but NU continued to build on its lead, going ahead 57-44 with 8:06 to play. Lauren Douglas drained NU’s first 3-pointer of the game to put NU up 53-44, Inman added another bucket and Douglas added two more fastbreak points to help the Wildcats go up 13.
Coffey was whistled for her fourth foul, sending IUPUI to the line again and they cut the deficit to nine. NU once again jumped ahead by double-digits, leading by as many as 16 late in the game, and held off the Jaguars for the 72-61 win.
With Deary whistled for her fourth foul midway through the second half, senior guard La’Terria Taylor played quality minutes late in the game, helping the Wildcats stay on top to record their ninth win of the season.
Northwestern wraps up the nonconference portion of its schedule on the road at the Tulane/DoubleTree Classic in New Orleans. Competition runs from Dec. 28-29 with the Wildcats first facing Indiana State on Saturday, Dec. 28.
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