ST. PAUL, Minn. (WLUC) – Northern Michigan University Women's Basketball defeated University of Jamestown in the team's second game of the Radisson Hotel Classic, defeating the Jimmies 54-45 behind a strong defensive effort.
Senior Jessica Schultz (Mineral Point, Wis.) led the way with 14 points and eight rebounds. Sophomore Lexi Smith (St. Germain, Wis.) added 10 points while freshman Emily Mueller (Fond du Lac, Wis.) posted eight points and had seven rebounds.
Senior Darby Youngstrom (Cook, Minn.) aided the effort with seven points.
The Wildcats built their lead with strong defense, holding the Jamestown offense to just 23.9% shooting from the field and 26.2% from the three-point line. The Jimmies shot 16-67 from the field and went 11-42 from behind the arc.
NMU was also 20-27 from the charity stripe while they only allowed Jamestown four chances at the free throw line.
THE FIRST QUARTER
Schultz hit a jumper from Youngstrom and the pair switched their roles to give NMU a 4-0 lead. The Jimmies scored their first basket at the 6:45 mark then with 3:49 on the clock, Dillinger sank a free throw. Sophomore Elizabeth Lutz (Marshall, Wis.) then made a layup followed by a three-pointer by senior Tess Weatherly (Howell, Mich.) to give NMU a 10-2 lead.
In the final minute of the quarter Jamestown sank two free throws, which Schultz answered with her own make from the charity stripe. The Jimmies finished the quarter with a three and NMU took an 11-7 lead after the first frame.
FINISHING THE HALF
Smith scored three points to open the second quarter, but Jamestown responded by hitting a three. Senior Taylor Hodell (Wausau, Wis.) followed with an old fashioned three-pointer, but the Jimmies again made a three and made the score 17-13 with 7:11 left in the half.
The NMU defense then clamped down and helped the Wildcats build a 24-13 halftime lead. Schultz started the run with a layup, then Youngstrom followed with three free throws. Smith finished the first half scoring with a layup.
THE THIRD QUARTER
Mueller scored the first points of the second half for NMU and Schultz followed it with two free throws, but Jamestown answered with a three to make the NMU 28-16 three minutes into the half.
The Jimmies added a layup before a Smith free throw, then followed it with a jumper but Youngstrom responded with two free throws and NMU was up 31-20 at the 3:49 mark.
Smith then hit a jumper and Schultz added a three-pointer to build the lead up to 36-20. With 20 seconds to go Jamestown made a basket and the quarter ended with NMU leading 36-22.
THE FINAL QUARTER
To start the fourth quarter, Smith again scored first but the Jimmies answered with a three-pointer. Hodell followed with a jumper and Schultz sank two free throws to move NMU ahead 42-25. After a Jamestown three, Schultz and Honkala made layups and senior Sydney Dillinger (Houghtown, Mich.) hit a jumper and made the NMU lead 48-28 with 4:33 to play.
Over the next three minutes, Jamestown chipped into the lead, taking it down to 48-42 but Mueller stopped the run with two free throws. The Jimmies hit another three, but Mueller answered with four free throws to close out the game and gave NMU a 54-45 victory.
The Wildcats improve to 5-2 on the season and will now look to start Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference action. NMU heads to Northwoods University Thursday night. They will host Purdue University Northwest in the Berry Events Center Thursday, December 6.