MARQUETTE, Mich. - Saginaw Valley State University ran its winning streak to six games after a Thursday night road victory over the Northern Michigan University Wildcats by a score of 62-60. The Cardinals held off a late charge from the Wildcats in the final minutes of play for the win.
After an early 3-0 Wildcat lead, two buckets from Emily Wendling and another from Halee Nieman gave the visitors a 6-3 lead with 7:39 showing on the clock. Northern Michigan took the lead back and led until SVSU used consecutive baskets from Katelyn Carriere and Grace Whelan to knot the score at 16-16 with with 1:21 to go in the first quarter. NMU scored in response to that, making the count 18-16 17 seconds later to finish the first frame with that score.
Back-to-back buckets from Wendling opened play for the second, giving SVSU a 20-18 advantage at the 8:52 marker. Three ties would ensue from there, with the third coming at 24-24 on a Wildcat layup with 5:15 on the clock. Wendling and Abby Duffy would add a couple baskets, grabbing a 28-24 edge with 4:09 remaining in the half. After another tie at 28-28, NMU regained the lead and would carry a 32-29 edge at halftime.
The Cardinals got the lead back with 6:40 on the clock in the third quarter at 38-37 after Carriere made good on a pair of free throws. After the home squad led 43-38, Wendling connected on four free throws, followed by a Nieman layup and three-pointer from Francesca Coury to give SV a 47-43 lead with 2:35 to play in the third. Carriere closed-out the quarter with a made layup in response to a Wildcat 48-47 lead, giving the visitors a 49-48 edge heading into the fourth. The Cards posted a 20-16 advantage in the third quarter.
That would propel SVSU to score the next eight points as well, compliments of three Wendling layups and one from Carriere, to to make the lead nine points (55-48) at the 6:52 point. That marked the largest lead of the night for either team. The Wildcats cut the lead to a pair at 61-59 with just over a minute to play and to a single point at 61-60 after two missed Cardinal free throws. With just a few seconds remaining, Carriere would go to the line and make the second of two tries, making the score 62-60. That would be the final scoring for the game, as the Wildcats couldn't get a shot off and Saginaw Valley improved to 19-4 overall on the season.
Inside the Boxscore
- Wendling was named the Meijer "Player of the Game," as she posted game-highs of 25 points and seven rebounds. She was 10-of-19 from the floor and 5-of-6 from the foul line. Her first two points of the night gave her 1,800 for her career. She is third on the all-time scoring list with 1,823 points. Emily has notched at least 20 points in 13 games this season.
- Nieman added 12 points, four boards, two blocks, a pair of steals and an assist in the victory.
- Carriere registered 10 points with three assists and three steals with a rebound.
- SVSU shot an even 50.0% (24-48) from the floor while NMU was at 44.7% (21-47).
- The Cardinals led the points in the paint category 34-28 and had 11 turnovers compared to NMU's 16.
- The Wildcats outrebounded the Cardinals by a narrow 28-25 margin.
- The six game win streak is one shy of last year's high of seven games. SV has won 11 of its last 12 games as well.
- The Cards hold a three game lead in the GLIAC North Division with four regular season contests remaining.
- SVSU is one game shy of its first back-to-back 20-win seasons since 1986-87 and 1987-88.
From Head Coach Jamie Pewinski
"We got a great effort tonight against a tough Northern Michigan team in a tough place to play. We just stayed the course and kept with the game plan, through some tough adversity. We were forced to use some different lineups, but we just continued to work hard. Any road win in this conference is big, so we're very excited to get this one!"
Saginaw Valley continues on in the Upper Peninsula Saturday, taking on the Michigan Tech University Huskies in a noon matchup. The Cardinals defeated the Huskies by a score of 79-67 on Saturday, Jan. 14. Michigan Tech is coming off a 79-61 home victory over Wayne State on Thursday night.
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