UMC dropped to 0-2 after a pair of weekend losses.

    The University of Minnesota Crookston women’s basketball team fell to Northern Michigan University by a score of 73-55. UMC and Northern Michigan both got off to fast starts in the first five minutes of the first quarter. However, the Wildcats outscored the Golden Eagles 24-13 in the third quarter to come away with the victory.   

    Minnesota Crookston opens the season 0-2 after tough losses to Northern Michigan and Michigan Technological University. The Wildcats improved to 3-1 with Saturday’s victory.   

    The Golden Eagles struggled shooting the ball in the first half as they shot just 33.3 percent from the field. Minnesota Crookston improved in the second half as they were 11-of-23 for 47.83 percent on field goals.    

    However, it would not be enough in the loss. The Golden Eagles finished the game 19-of-47 for 40.4 percent. They were 4-of-15 from beyond the arc for 26.7 percent and 13-of-17 for 76.5 percent from the charity stripe.   

    Minnesota Crookston looked to 18 points and seven boards in the post from Isieoma Odor (R-Jr., F/C, Bloomington, Minn.), who was 7-of-13 from the field. Micaela Noga (Sr., G, Parkers Prairie, Minn.) struggled from the field as she was just 1-of-10 from the day. She made up for it at the foul line where she was 5-of-6 for the game. Noga finished with eight points. Caitlin Michaelis (Jr., G, Marshfield, Wis.) and Stephanie McWilliams (So., G, Grand Forks, N.D.) each chipped in seven points. Emily Gruber (Sr., F/C, Monticello, Minn.) finished with seven points and six rebounds. McWilliams added four assists on the day.   

    The Golden Eagles tallied just eight points off the bench on the day.   

    Northern Michigan looked to their post Jessica Schultz, who finished with 19 points and eight rebounds. Darby Youngstrom added 13 points and six boards. Lexi Smith rounded out the double-figure scoring for the Wildcats with 10 points. Elizabeth Lutz added eight points.   

    Northern Michigan went 27-of-52 from the field for 51.9 percent. They were 3-of-9 from beyond the arc for 33.3 percent and 16-of-19 from three-point range for 84.2 percent.   

    The Wildcats controlled the glass on the day by the tune of 35-20.   

    The Golden Eagles trailed Northern Michigan 18-12 after a solid first quarter. Both teams started the game going shot for shot but Northern Michigan later pulled away with Jessica Schultz’s eight points, which led both teams for the first quarter. The Golden Eagles were led in the first quarter by Odor with six points. Minnesota Crookston only shot 25 percent from the field while Northern Michigan shot 53.3 percent.   

    After being down 25-17 at in the second quarter, Noga hit a three pointer to get the team going. As the second quarter came to a close the Golden Eagles heated up finishing with a 41.7 percent shooting percentage.    

    Another big factor that kept Minnesota Crookston in the game the first half was their superb free throw shooting as they went 8-of-8 at the line. At the end of the first half the Golden Eagles trailed Northern Michigan 32-25.   

    As the third quarter opened up, the Golden Eagles picked up right where they left off by getting to the foul line on their first possession. Gruber was able to draw a foul while driving to the basket but would only make 1-of-2 free throws. Shortly after, McWilliams provided a spark by making a basket while being fouled and to finish the play she converted her free throw. The last five minutes of the third quarter Northern Michigan went on an 11-5 run which extended their lead to 56-38 as the quarter ended. The Golden Eagles were also 4-of-7 at the free throw line for the third quarter.    

    While Minnesota Crookston shot much better in the fourth quarter Northern Michigan still continued to pull away with their stout defense and good shooting. Even though the Golden Eagles shot 50 percent in the fourth quarter, it still was not enough to mount a comeback as the Wildcats won 73-55. As the game went on Minnesota Crookston shot better but Northern Michigan had been sitting around 52 percent all game.   

    The Golden Eagles will return to action at the Cesar Odio Thanksgiving Classic in Miami Shores, Fla. Minnesota Crookston will face Palm Beach Atlantic University on Fri., Nov. 24 and Barry University on Sat., Nov. 25. Starting times will be at 6 p.m. and 4 p.m. respectively.