Women’s basketball to get second chance against Western Michigan

By Joren Apiquian

Women’s basketball (11-18, 4-14 MAC) will get a rematch against Western Michigan University (16-14, 8-10 MAC) in the MAC Tournament tonight, after falling to the Broncos 64-60 on Saturday at the Convocation Center.

NIU outscored Western Michigan in the first two periods but failed to capitalize on the momentum, falling apart in the third quarter. The Huskies shot 41 percent in comparison to Western Michigan’s 37.7 percent.

Freshman guard Mikayla Voigt led the Huskies with 17 points. Voigt also had three rebounds, three assists and three steals. Sophomore forward Kelly Smith contributed 16 points of her own and junior guard Ally Lehman dropped 11 points and seven rebounds in the contest.

Despite another conference loss, NIU head coach Lisa Carlsen has high hopes for the Huskies heading into the MAC Tournament.

“Games like that prepare us for obviously what is to come next week,” Carlsen said. “There won’t be a lot in the game plan, just trying to figure out how we can be more effective on both ends of the floor. [We have] two good films to look at and we’ll see what happens on Monday.”

The Huskies ended the regular season 6-7 at home and 3-10 on the road, giving them the second worst record in the MAC behind Kent State University, who went 6-22 overall and 3-15 in the MAC. The team suffered three losing streaks of at least three games and struggled to get on track all year.

NIU and Western Michigan first met on Feb. 24 and the Huskies were able to pull off an 80-70 win, largely thanks to a record-setting performance by Lehman, who scored 41 points in the upset. It was the first time the Huskies beat the Broncos since the 2013-14 season, when they downed Western Michigan 59-51 in another season finale.