The Lady RedHawks of Indiana University Northwest won their opening-round contest at the United States Collegiate Athletic Association National Tournament in McKeesport, Pa., on Wednesday, defeating the Briarcliffe College Lady Seahawks 78-62 in a rough-and-tumble affair that saw IU Northwest hit 33 free throws on 46 attempts.
Star forward Sharon Houston scored 32 points to go with 19 rebounds and eight blocks, while Lake Central grad and freshman forward Ashley Michalski added 13 points and 13 rebounds.
“The other team just came out and fouled us like crazy,” IU Northwest head coach Ryan Shelton said after the game. “They were really aggressive. There was an intentional foul called, and a couple of technical fouls. To our credit, we didn’t get caught up in that.”
Led by Houston and Michalski, the Lady RedHawks instead played the rebound game, grabbing 51 boards to Briarcilffe’s 35. That hustle allowed 10th-seeded IU Northwest to overcome 26 turnovers and four scoreless minutes at the start the game to post a convincing 16-point victory over seventh-seeded Briarcliffe.
Bishop Noll grad Nina Wills and Kouts grad Juliette Keller each added nine points for the Lady RedHawks.
The Lady RedHawks will next play on Thursday, March 5, at 3 p.m. Eastern time against second-seeded Spalding University out of Louisville. That game is scheduled to be broadcast over Web-streaming radio starting at 4 p.m. Eastern time (3 p.m. Chicago time), but those broadcast times are subject to change. Game broadcasts may be accessed at http://www.uscaahoops.com/listen.html
Unfortunately, the outcome wasn’t as positive for the RedHawk men’s team, which fell to Michigan’s Rochester College 70-57 on Wednesday in a game that was also marred by fouls. IU Northwest played the first half to a draw and stayed close for most of the second half, pulling to within 52-47 with five minutes remaining. But Rochester’s repeated trips to the line were too much for the RedHawks to overcome.
The men will enter the tournament’s Division I consolation round with a game on Thursday, March 5, at 6 p.m. Eastern time. Their opponent in the contest will be determined by a later game on Wednesday. Thursday’s game is scheduled to be broadcast at 6 p.m. Eastern time (5 p.m. Chicago time).