Carlsen earns win No. 300 in upset over Bowling Green


Nyla Owens

NIU senior guard Chelby Koker drives to the basket as Miami University senior guard Peyton Scott defends during the Huskies’ home game against the RedHawks on January 18, 2023 at the NIU Convocation Center. Miami prevailed in a 74-69 contest. (Nyla Owens | Northern Star)

By Jermel Williams, Sports Reporter

DeKALB – NIU women’s basketball (13-11,5-8 MAC ) upset the No. 1 ranked team in the Mid-American Conference Bowling Green State University (22-3, 11-2 MAC) by a final score of 85-81 to earn head coach Lisa Carlsen her 300th career win.  

Wednesday’s game was dominated by senior guard Chelby Koker, senior forward A’Jah Davis and graduate guard Janae Poisson. Koker led with a game-high 18 points shooting 41% from the field. Davis posted her fifth straight double-double since coming back from a knee injury suffered in late January. Poisson has been a spark off the bench for the Huskies all season, and posted 17 points and shot 4-4 from behind the arch Wednesday. 

“Chelby, again, really handled their pressure well because they (Bowling Green) make it really difficult,” Carlsen said. “They’ll hedge hard (and) they’ll stay long in some of the double teams.”

The Huskies had a strong first quarter, with junior guard Jayden Marable, freshman forward Tara Stauffacher and Poisson all shooting 100% from the field. Stauffacher ended the quarter with six points, helping the Huskies to a 10-point lead after one quarter, 24-14.

The Falcons made an early second-quarter push and eventually cut the game to a one-point Huskies lead with three minutes remaining in the quarter. The surge for the Falcons was led by senior guard Elissa Brett, who scored seven of her nine points in the second quarter. The Huskies were able to maintain the lead with a big three-point shot from Poisson to end the second quarter leading 42-38. 

The Huskies started the third quarter without missing a shot until the 6:24 mark, going 5-5 from the field and 1-1 from the three-point line increasing the lead back to 10 with six minutes left in the third quarter. 

The Falcons stuck around in the third quarter, taking 14 more shots than NIU to close the lead to four points. The Falcons also pulled down seven offensive rebounds compared to NIU’s one. 

The Huskies held a 60-58 lead at the start of the fourth quarter, battling hard to keep the lead. Thanks to a 4-8 shooting percentage from three compared to Bowling Green’s 1-7, NIU escaped with an 85-81 win over the top team in the MAC, snapping its 11-game win streak. 

“We had a lot of people step up and do some great things tonight,” Carlsen said via NIU Athletics. “We shared the basketball and shot it really well, and handled Bowling Green’s defense very well down the stretch.”

NIU continues MAC play at 1 p.m. Saturday when they take on Ball State University at the Convocation Center. The game will be broadcast live on ESPN3, and live stats will be available on SidearmSports