MARQUETTE, Mich. – Northern Michigan University women’s basketball led the entire game on their way to a 72-47 victory over the Lake Erie Storm. The Wildcats improved to 7-5 overall on the season with a 5-3 mark in conference play with the victory. Sophomore guard Bre Gaspervich recorded a double-double in the victory with a game-high 26 points and 13 rebounds to go with five steals and three assists.
“We needed to play with more intensity after the Ashland game,” commented head coach Troy Mattson. “The last couple days have been a little different in practice. More coaching towards playing the game and we showed a lot of intensity early, didn’t allow them to shoot threes and we did a good job in the inside.”
NMU opened the game scoring 20 of the first 25 points to give themselves the early 20-5 advantage with 10:59 remaining in the first half. A three-point basket from senior guard Sarah Miller gave the Wildcats their largest lead of the half at 24 with a 40-16 score before the halftime score was set at 41-21 NMU.
Northern Michigan outrebounded the Storm 22-13 in the opening half, while shoooting 15-28 (.536) from the field. The Wildcat defense also held the Storm to 7-28 (.250) shooting in the half.
The Storm were able to cut the deficit down to 18 at the beginning of the second half at 46-28 with 16:55 on the clock, but the Wildcats would score the next nine points capped off by a layup from sophomore guard Ashley Colla to re-extend the lead out to a 55-28 tally with 13:16 left to play. Northern Michigan would continue to control a sizeable lead and cruise to the 72-47 final.
The Wildcats finished the game shooting 25-52 (.481) from the field and held Lake Erie to 17-59 (.288) shooting. The Wildcats finished the game outrebounding the Storm 48-27 and outscored Lake Erie 30-14 in the paint.
“Intensity,” Mattson on the reason for the strong defensive performance. “Our defensive plan isn’t going to change too much game by game, our biggest thing was intensity. We needed to bring it from the get go and we did that.”
Senior forward Abbey DeBruin finished the game with 10 points and six boards behind Gaspervich.
Northern Michigan will next host Grand Valley State Thursday, Jan. 15 at 5:30 p.m. and Ferris State Saturday, Jan. 17 at 1 p.m.
(Information/Photo Courtesy of NMU Athletics)