Women’s hoops defensive struggles continue in loss


Members of the women’s basketball team watch as its team loses on Senior Night. The Huskies earned a first-round bye in the Mid-American Conference Tournament and are the No. 4 seed. 

By Eddie Garcia

Broncos 90 , NIU 77

DeKALB — Despite senior guard Ally Lehman’s record-setting 17th double-double, the women’s basketball teams’ defensive struggles continued against the Western Michigan University Broncos, as they fell in their final regular season game, 90-77.

The Huskies (19-10, 12-6 Mid-American Conference) led for less than three minutes in the first quarter, but that would be all for the game.

The Broncos controlled the driver’s seat on offense, not allowing another lead change for the remainder of the contest.

NIU shot 11-for-27 in the first half but only shot 22 percent from the behind the arc. Western Michigan dominated close to the basket throughout the game as they outscored the Huskies 48-24 from inside the paint.

Redshirt senior forward Cassidy Glenn came off the bench shooting well in the first half, as she scored eight points on 3-for-4 shooting from the field, in just 13 minutes of play. Glenn finished the game tied with a game-high of 20 points and also added four rebounds.

Western Michigan (17-12, 8-10 MAC) junior forward Marley Hill led her team in scoring, as she and Glenn had similar stat lines with 20 points and four rebounds.

NIU turned up its offense in the third quarter as they shot 57 percent from the field and behind the arc. Despite the high shooting percentage, the defense allowed 26 points in the third quarter as the Broncos shot 69 percent from the field.

Western Michigan outhustled the Huskies on the glass 37-29 for 17 total second-chance points.

The Broncos led by as much as 18 points with nearly eight remaining in the third quarter as NIU was unable to mount a comeback for the remainder of the game.

Sophomore guard Courtney Woods finished with 18 as her and Lehman supplemented Huskie’s offense. Lehman finished with her 17 double-double of the season with 14 points, 10 assists and six rebounds.

Opponents over the past five games averaged over 88 points per game against NIU as the Huskies struggle to keep up with opposing teams’ high-energy offenses. NIU has averaged just over 80 points per game within the past five contests.

The Huskies have lost four out of their past five games as they drop to the fourth seed in the Mid-American Conference tournament.

This is the fourth time in NIU history that the Huskies finish top-four in the MAC and the first time since the 2008-09 season.

Even with the loss against the Broncos, the Huskies earned a first-round bye and will head to Quicken Loans Arena, the home of the Cleveland Cavaliers, in Cleveland to face either the Ohio University Bobcats or Eastern Michigan University Eagles around 1:30 p.m. Wednesday.