Women’s basketball drops fifth-straight

Davis and Koker shine in close loss to MAC rival Central Michigan University.

Junior+forward+AJah+Davis+%28left%29+watches+junior+guard+Chelby+Koker+drive+to+the+basket+in+NIUs+victory+over+Bradley+on+Nov.+22.+%28Northern+Star+File+Photo%29

Wes Sanderson

Junior forward A’Jah Davis (left) watches junior guard Chelby Koker drive to the basket in NIU’s victory over Bradley on Nov. 22. (Northern Star File Photo)

DeOndre Saunders, Sports Reporter

DeKALB — Women’s basketball’s losing streak continued after a 72-68 loss to the Central Michigan University Chippewas Saturday. The Huskies’ losing streak moved to five games with the loss.

The Huskies had two players record double-doubles. Junior forward A’Jah Davis scored 23 points and had 17 rebounds. Junior guard Chelby Koker scored 16 points and had 12 rebounds.

Davis dominated in the paint during the first quarter. She scored 11 points in the first quarter, with ten points coming from inside the paint.

“We knew we needed to give the ball to A’Jah,” head coach Lisa Carlsen said in a postgame interview with Huskie Sports Radio Network. “She makes such a difference for us in the lane.”

In the first quarter, the Chippewas focused on scoring on the outside, mainly shooting the three-point shot. Central Michigan shot 2-11 from three in the first quarter.

Freshman guard Tiana Timpe led the Chippewas with five points, going only 1-5 from three in the quarter. The Huskies finished the first quarter up by 11 with a 23-12 lead.

The Chippewas went on an 8-0 run to start the second quarter. Junior guard Molly Davis was responsible for the run, cutting into the Huskie lead 29-22, at the TV timeout.

Out of the timeout, the Huskies went on a 5-0 run. Both teams continued to trade points, but the Huskies kept their lead.

The Huskies led by 11 at halftime with a 38-27 advantage. Davis led the way at the half with 11 points and Koker had nine points. Molly Davis led all scorers with 15 points for the Chippewas.

Central Michigan came out of the half on a hot shooting streak to begin. Molly Davis had 20 points at the four-minute mark of the third quarter. The Huskies could not contain Molly Davis as she scored nine points in the third quarter alone.

The Chippewas would double team A’Jah Davis so she would not score in the paint as she did in the first quarter. The Huskies moved slow on defense, allowing the Chippewas to score 23 total points in the quarter. The Huskies still led at the end of the third quarter, up 54-50.

The Chippewas would go on a 6-0 run to start the fourth quarter. The Huskies called timeout after the run but the Chippewas would continue to improve their streak to make it a 12-0 run.

The Chippewas would take a five-point lead against the Huskies, but a three-pointer from senior guard Janae Poisson would bring the Huskies within two with a minute left. Molly Davis controlled the ball with a minute left and took a long three, which missed. Huskies then called timeout to draw a play.

The Huskies came out of the timeout to inbound the ball and turned the ball over after senior forward Mikayla Brandon stepped over the line when inbounding the ball. After the Huskies’ turnover, the Chippewas scored, putting the Huskies down four with 30 seconds left.

The Huskies had another chance to tie the game, but Brandon turned the ball over again on an inbound pass, throwing the ball over the head of A’Jah Davis which went out of bounds. They fouled the Chippewas to stop the clock in hopes that the Chippewas would miss their free throws.

The Huskies possessed the ball as A’Jah Davis was fouled and went to the line. She made only one free throw to put the  Huskies down three with eight seconds left. The Huskies fouled Molly Davis, who made both free throws.

The Huskies lost 72-68 despite being dominant the whole game. Molly Davis led all scorers with 32 points and had ten assists.

“We got hesitant and less aggressive,” Carlsen said. “They got more aggressive and the momentum shifted for us and we never got it back.”

The Huskies head back home to play their first home game of the calendar year against Ball State University Wednesday at the Convocation Center.