BG women’s basketball defeats Huskies

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Erica Donovan drives toward the hoop in a game earlier this season at the Stroh Center.

Tara Jones and Tara Jones

The BG women’s basketball team defeated Northern Illinois 57-44 in a physical Mid-American Conference battle at the Stroh Center on Sunday afternoon.

With the win, the Falcons advanced to 16-3 overall and 6-1 in the MAC. The Huskies dropped to 7-10 overall and 3-4 in conference play.

The Falcons and the Huskies entered the matchup as the top two scoring defenses in the league, BG being ranked ahead of NIU.

At the beginning of the first half, neither team was shooting well. The Falcons turned it around however and ended the half at 50 percent from both the field and from three-point range. The Huskies went 24.1 percent from the field for the half and went 0-for-3 from behind the arc.

In the second half, NIU’s shooting improved to 35.3 percent and they finished 19-of-63 for 30.2 percent. BG’s field goal percentage decreased to 38.9 percent for the second half, but the Falcons finished 19-of-42 for 45.2 percent. The Falcons also went 41.2 percent from the three-point line, whereas the Huskies went 11.1 percent.

Senior Jillian Halfhill led the Falcons with 14 points. Redshirt sophomore Erica Donovan finished with 13 points and sophomore Miriam Justinger added 11 points. Redshirt senior Alexis Rogers led the team in rebounds with 12 boards along with her 6 points.

Halfhill said that she feels good after the win, despite NIU’s second-half comeback effort because they still came through in the end. She said once her team starts making shots, their shooting becomes contagious.

“I like to pass and I like to score more this year than normal last year,” Halfhill said. “I think when we’re lacking in our offense, it’s good for someone to step up and then make a shot. Then everyone starts making shots because like I said earlier that shooting is contagious.”

Head coach Jennifer Roos said that she was happy with her team’s effort against a smart, talented and disruptive team in Northern Illinois.

“At the end of the day, this game came down to player personnel tendencies. I thought we had a very good scout and plan to what each kid could do and what each kid could not do,” she said.

Next up, the Falcons will travel to Ohio University on Thursday, Jan. 30 with tipoff set for 7 p.m.