NIU loses for 7th-straight time, 94-71

By Chris Sigley

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – For almost every error committed by the NIU men’s basketball team against Northern Iowa, the Panthers would find two ways to correct the mistake.

And the final correction usually ended with a score.

Bad passes, poor shot selection and shaky arms at the free-throw line by the Huskies added up to a 94-71 victory for the Panthers. NIU’s Stacy Arrington led the Huskies with 22 to match Northern Iowa leading scorer Jason Reese.

“We were right on the verge of getting things going,” NIU coach Jim Rosborough said, “and then there’d be a loose ball that they would pick up and turn into a 3-pointer or a rebound that we had and it rolls away and they turned it into another basket. I felt like that all night.”

Not much went right for the Homecoming to his native state of Iowa for the Huskie boss.

While watching his second-leading scorer, Donnell Thomas (15 points) foul out with 5:38 left in the game, Rosborough’s slight temper tantrum led to a technical foul.

Thomas’ disqualification initiated a dwindling of NIU’s big people, as Brent Varner (6 points) and Antwon Harmon (2 points) soon followed.

While Donald Whiteside contributed 11 points to the Huskies, the 5-10 point guard had a 0 in the assist box.

“Assists has to be one of the better parts of his ballgame,” Rosborough said.

osborough said Arrington, who recorded 8 rebounds, probably had “one of the best games of his career.”

“The first half I was a little bit tired,” Arrington said, “but the second half I got my energy back. My confidence was up and I was ready to play.”

Northern Iowa leaped to its halftime lead of 43-30 as they ripped up the net with 3-pointers. Although the Panthers sank six of their 10 first-half 3-point shots, Coach Eldon Miller was not overwhelmed with his team’s performance, namely the shots from the twilight zone.

“I might be the happiest guy in the world, but there’s a difference between happiness and satisfaction,” Miller said. “We look for those 3-pointers because we have people who can shoot them. I wasn’t very pleased with our soft ballhandling—we could have been more crisp.”

Before he fouled out, Thomas grabbed a team-high 10 rebounds. The Huskies outrebounded Northern Iowa 44-42 on the night.