Second half run takes Huskies past RedHawks

Chelby Koker drops 26 points, 7 assists in win


Patrick Murphy

Sophomore guard Chelby Koker (left) drives past two defenders Nov. 25, during NIU’s 85-61 loss to IUPUI at the NIU Convocation Center in DeKalb, Illinois. Koker scored a career-high 21 points in NIU’s season opener.

By Kyle Mathas

DeKALB — Women’s basketball records its second win in a row Saturday, defeating the University of Miami–Ohio RedHawks 66-52. 

The Huskies went on a 37-20 second half run after being down three at the end of the first half. The Huskies shot 43.1% from the field and  46.7% from 3-point land. NIU, who turned the ball over 14 times in the first half, only turned the ball over seven times in the second half. 

“At halftime, we were talking about how we felt like we didn’t have enough energy,” sophomore guard Chelby Koker said. “In the second half, we were really focusing on bringing more energy to the court, which helped us score the ball more.” 

Koker led the Huskies with 26 points and seven assists. Junior forward Mikayla Brandon had 10 points and six rebounds, and sophomore forward Ajah Davis, while fouling out in the fourth quarter, still had six points in the game.

“[Koker] is a very competitive player,” Head Coach Lisa Carlson said. “All of the things she is seeing on the court, she can continue to grow and develop as a player through those things.”

Miami was led by redshirt senior guard Abbey Hoff, who led the team with 11 points. Right behind her was sophomore guard Peyton Scott with 10 points. Miami also had 17 turnovers and 12 offensive rebounds. 

“We really should give it up for Miami,” Carlson said. “Their aggressiveness and length really gave us issues in the first half, and we had to develop a game plan to come back out in the second half and combat that.”

This win puts the Huskies on a two-game winning streak, and puts their record up to 8-6. The Huskies are 6-3 in conference play heading into their next game against the Bowling Green State University Falcons. 

“We need to bring our same energy and same defensive pride that we had today because Bowling Green is another tough team in our conference,” Koker said. 

The Huskies return to play 6 p.m. Wednesday at the NIU Convocation Center in DeKalb. The game can be streamed on ESPN+.