Women's basketball roundup: Utes make crucial free throws down the stretch

Deseret News

Published: Saturday, Feb. 11 2012 10:57 p.m. MST

Carli Moreland scored the first basket of the second half to make the score 31-21 in favor of SUU. The Jaguars (11-14, 6-7) narrowed the margin with four-straight points, but after two more layups from Moreland the T-Birds went back up by 10 at 37-27.

IUPUI chipped away at the lead over the next six minutes and was able to pull within five as a pair of free throws by Kerah Nelson made the score 41-36 approaching the seven-minute mark. SUU then used an 11-5 run, capped by a fast break layup as Taylor Maynes found Jones in transition, to push the margin back into the double figures as it went up 52-41 with three minutes left to play.

The Jaguars got back within six on a basket by Del'Niqua Bellamy, but Jones came right back with a pull-up jumper to put SUU up 54-46. Maynes then added a three-point play in the closing moments and Anderson added a free throw to set the final score at 58-48 for the Thunderbirds.

Hawkins was one of three Thunderbirds to finish in double figures, as SUU got 12 from Moreland and another 13 from Anderson, who matched her career best. Freshman forward Nevena Markovic led the Jaguars with 16 of her own.

The Thunderbird defense was solid throughout, holding the Jaguars to just 30.6 percent shooting on the night, the lowest mark of any SUU opponent this season. SUU was able to hold Jaguar forward Kerah Nelson to just five points on 1-10 shooting. The junior came into the game as one of the Summit League's top-scorers averaging 16.7 points per game.

The T-Birds also held a significant advantage on the glass in the contest, outrebounding IUPUI by a count of 48-29.

"We've done a good job rebounding all year,"? said Payne. "Tonight some of those O-boards translated into baskets for us."

The T-Birds will look for a second consecutive home win Monday when they host Western Illinois. SUU will tip things off against the Leathernecks in the Centrum Arena at 7 p.m. MT.

NORTHERN ARIZONA 85, WEBER STATE 82: At Ogden, Northern Arizona scored to take the lead after stealing an inbounds pass with 10 seconds left and then converted a pair of free throws with three-tenths of a second left. The loss spoiled a record-breaking night for junior forward Amanda Hughes, who pulled down a Big Sky Conference single-game record 24 rebounds to go along with 20 points. Hughes' rebounding total is tied for the second most in Weber State history, trailing only a 26-rebound effort by Kathy Miller against Colorado in 1977. Two other Weber State players, Cindy Stumph and Miller, recorded 24-rebound effort nights, with the last coming 30 years ago.

Hughes had 15 of those rebounds in the second half as the Wildcats (2-23, 0-12 Big Sky) rallied from a double-digit deficit to take the lead in the final minute.

Junior guard Megan Patterson added 23 points, knocking down five 3-pointers, to lead Weber State in scoring, knocking down 14 second-half points. Senior guard Caela Mohre added 16 points, while junior forward Shawnte Taylor added 11 and senior center Mikell Woodfield added 10 as the Wildcats reached a season-high point total.

Weber State staked out an 11-point lead in the opening half, but Northern Arizona rallied to tie things up at 40-all at halftime.

The Lumberjacks charged out early in the second half, building a 71-57 advantage with 9:54 remaining, but the Wildcats stormed back behind three 3-pointers from Patterson. Taylor's tip-in with 93 seconds forged a 81-81 tie, and Hughes' free throw with 50 seconds to play gave Weber State the lead.

Weber State will remain home to face Montana on Thursday at the Dee Events Center. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.

UTAH VALLEY, CHICAGO STATE 61: At Orem, the Wolverines exacted some revenge for a 27-point Great West Conference loss less than two weeks ago in Chicago. The Wolverines got great production from the backcourt as guards Whitney Jenkins, Jenna Johnson, and Alle Finch all finished in double figures, and Sammie Jensen notched her 13th double-double on the year.

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