Northern Iowa used a surge late in the first quarter to seize control as it downed the Loyola University Chicago women’s basketball team, 89-43, this evening inside Gentile Arena. The Panthers (19-6 overall) move to 12-2 in Missouri Valley Conference play with the win, while the Ramblers (2-22 overall) see their league record slip to 1-12.
How It Happened
Both teams came out firing to begin the evening. Katie Salmon answered an Angie Davison three with a triple of her to knot the game up at 3-3 with 51 seconds gone. Kaitlyn Williams connected from distance just under three minutes later to give Loyola its first lead of the night, 8-6. A deep trey by Preseason All-MVC selection Madison Weekly with 5:18 remaining ignited a 13-0 Panther run that would see the visitors take a 26-12 lead after one quarter of play.
Consecutive scores by Lee Williams and Citiana Negatu chipped the Northern Iowa lead to 28-16 with 8:03 to go in the second quarter. In the minutes following, Loyola kept its deficit between 12 and 15 points before another Weekly three served as the catalyst for a Northern Iowa spurt as the Panthers raced into halftime with a 47-20 advantage.
A pair of makes at the free throw line by Tiara Wallace that were followed by a mid-range bucket from Brandi Segars cut the Panther lead down to 49-24 at the 8:41 mark of the third quarter. Northern Iowa continued to operate at a torrid rate on the offensive end as time rolled on, pushing the margin to 72-32 on a Kennedy Kirkpatrick triple just before the end of the frame.
Negatu twisted through traffic for the Ramblers’ first make of the fourth quarter, which trimmed the deficit to 74-34. Salmon converted in the paint following a steal by Lee Williams to pull the Maroon & Gold to within 76-40 with seven minutes to go but that would be as close as Loyola could get before time expired.
Inside The Box Score
- Wallace paced the Rambler attack on the evening with 10 points to go along with two rebounds, two assists and a steal.
- Both Segars and Lee Williams recorded four steals on the evening. Segars' four takeaways tie a career high, while Williams established a new career best in the category.
- Weekly led the Panthers with a game-high 15 points and Northern Iowa finished the night at just under 60% (37-of-62) shooting from the field.
Loyola returns to the Gentile Arena hardwood on Sunday afternoon when it takes on MVC frontrunner No. 25/rv Drake. Tip-off is slated for 1 p.m.