Stingy NMU defense shuts down LSSU

Photo Courtesy by Sam Downs
Photo Courtesy by Sam Downs
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SAULT STE. MARIE – The Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference's second-stingiest defense shut down Lake Superior State's offense to win Thursday's women's basketball game, 55-38.

Northern Michigan (15-7 overall, 10-5 GLIAC), which allows opponents to score only 54.5 points per game, ranks second in scoring defense behind Grand Valley State. The Wildcats limited LSSU to 12 field goals and 24 percent from the field.

Lake Superior State (4-18 overall, 2-13 GLIAC) put together its own defensive stand in the second quarter and limited NMU to 1-of-7 shooting from the field. During that stretch, the Lakers took advantage of five NMU turnovers and out-scored the Wildcats 7-0 on second-chance points to trim a 14-point deficit to 10 points by halftime.

A Valerie Meissner three-pointer cut NMU's lead to seven points, 27-20, early in the third quarter. NMU answered with an 8-0 run late in the period. The Wildcats extended the lead to 22 points with a 12-0 run during the first five minutes of the fourth quarter.

Bre Gaspervich totaled 10 points and six rebounds, and Tess Weatherly added nine points to lead NMU. The Wildcats shot 45.7 percent from the field and made 6-of-14 three-point attempts. Erin Honkala and Jessica Schultz combined for 17 rebounds as the Wildcats controlled the boards, 40-20. NMU made 17-of-22 free throws.

Lexie Khon scored 10 points and Tamara Novic added nine to lead Lake Superior State. LSSU was 5-of-18 from behind the arc and made 9-of-10 free throws.

LSSU plays host to Michigan Tech at 1 p.m. Saturday at Bud Cooper Gymnasium.