Men’s and women’s basketball travel to NIU

Jason Jones and Jason Jones

Both BG basketball teams will head west tomorrow for meetings with Northern Illinois.

Both teams enter the game hot, though seemingly at different temperatures.

The women’s team has now won 17 games in a row. That win streak is the third longest in the nation, behind only Auburn and No. 1 Connecticut, who have 19 wins and 18 wins respectively.

The women haven’t played since last Saturday when they turned in a mediocre performance against a struggling Eastern Michigan team. Despite playing one of their sloppiest games of the season, the Falcons still managed to bring home a 14-point win over the Eagles.

Now their attention will shift to some better opponents. Having not really been challenged by any team so far in conference play, the women will now play three of their next four games against the three teams currently tied atop the Mid-American Conference West standings.

The Huskies come into the game at 10-9 (5-1 MAC) and have looked strong as of late.

“They really seem to be confident right now,” said coach Curt Miller.

The Falcons, who come in at 17-2 (6-0 MAC), will once again rely on the scoring and rebounding of sophomore Lauren Prochaska, who leads the team in both categories.

The Falcons will also look for continued production out of junior Niki McCoy. McCoy was one rebound shy of a double-double against EMU and could match up well with the Huskies. With one field goal in tomorrow’s game, McCoy will have 1,000 points in her college career.

Miller has done a good job of keeping his team looking forward all season, making them move on to the next game as soon as the last one is over.

The men’s team will also enter the game on a streak, theirs a modest two games. But those two games were big for the Falcons.

Against Ohio last Saturday, the men picked up their first road win of the season, with a nail-biting one point win.

The win proved that BG is capable of both winning on the road and finishing in the second half, two things they will need to do to extend their win streak to three games.

On Wednesday, the Falcons hosted Ball State, and picked up another impressive win. The Cardinals entered the game with only one loss in conference play, but was outdone by BG, who led the game from start to finish.

Now, BG travels to NIU, who currently sit at 2-3 in conference play. NIU has had their struggles in the weak MAC West, but the fact that they’re at home should completely level the playing field, if not tip it in their favor.

BG will enter the game with a record of 10-9 (3-3 MAC).

For the Falcons to win, they’ll need to see continued success from their big man Otis Polk. Polk had arguably his best game of the season against Ball State and will definitely need to perform well again if the Falcons are to win.

On Wednesday it was announced that BG’s Marc Larson will undergo surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his knee. The severity of the tear and the timetable for his return are still unknown, but what is certain is that BG will need Polk to step up and fill the void left by his fellow big man.

Chris Knight and Erik Marschall will also help fill the void.

The Falcons will also need Nate Miller to get back on track. Miller, who had led the Falcons in scoring for three straight games, faltered against Ball State, shooting 2-for-8 from the field and finishing with seven points.

The men can climb back above .500 in conference play with a win, and the women can put their win percentage at .900.

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Contact sports reporter Jason Jones at [email protected]