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RedHawk men, women split Homecoming doubleheader

Ladies defeat Andrews University for their 10th straight victory

IU Northwest file photo
Junior Adam White of Chesterton scored 14 points, including four three-pointers.

Indiana University Northwest celebrated its fourth annual Homecoming festivities on Jan. 24 with a split decision against Andrews University, of Berrien Springs, Mich. The Lady RedHawks opened the twin bill with a 75-33 drubbing of the Andrews Lady Cardinals, while the men lost a hard-fought contest 67-52 against their Michigan counterparts.

It was an easy night for the two-time A.I.I. Conference Champion Lady RedHawks, as they easily overpowered a short-staffed Cardinals squad with a 14-0 run to start the game.

Michelle Rosenbaum (Valparaiso) led all scorers with 14 points, while the Keller sisters, senior Juliette and sophomore Annmarie (Kouts), scored 12 each. Freshman Paige Hickenbottom (Hebron) added 10, while senior All-American Sharon Houston (Merrillville) put down eight points to go with eight rebounds and five blocks. Five other players also got into the scoring column for IU Northwest.

It was an easy victory in front of an enthusiastic home crowd.

"Homecoming is always a fun night for the entire campus,” said Lady RedHawks head coach Ryan Shelton after the game. “It was good to see the team start fast with a good effort, with all of our kids getting an opportunity to play in front of a big home crowd.  

“Our players and coaching staff are very appreciative of all the campus support we received tonight and continue to receive throughout the year,” he added.

The victory was the Lady RedHawks’ tenth in a row and moved them to 13-10 on the season. After a slow start, the two-time national tournament qualifiers are working to earn a trip back to the A.I.I. Conference Tournament in South Dakota next month. 

It appeared for a while during the first half as though the men’s team might enjoy its own homecoming victory. The RedHawks looked competitive and held the lead for much of the first 20 minutes. But some missed passes and missed shots allowed the Cardinals to gain the advantage late in the half, and the RedHawks were not able to regain their early momentum after halftime.

Even so, RedHawks head coach Jason Hawkins praised his team’s effort and said the strong first half was indicative of what his players are capable of when they play together.  

“Andrews is a very good team,” he said. “We played really hard. It was emotional, and it’s homecoming. The guys came out with a great start. We just got beat by a better team today.”

Senior Justin Latimore (Purdue Calumet) and junior Adam White (Chesterton) had 14 points each, and White knocked down four three-pointers. Junior Barnett Baile (Elmhurst College) scored 13 and led the team with nine rebounds in a tough performance inside.

The loss dropped the RedHawks to 2-20 on the season. But Hawkins said neither he nor the team were discouraged.

“We’re improving,” the coach said. “You look at the record and you may not think that, but we’re improving each and every game. We’re playing hard, and I look forward to the next game.”  

The men and women both play on the road Thursday, Jan. 26, at Moody Bible Institute. The Lady RedHawks will then travel to NCAA D-I Chicago State on Wednesday, Feb. 1, before both teams head to Kuyper College for a twin bill on Friday, Feb. 3.

Of course, homecoming is also about alumni, and before the women’s game Coach Shelton acknowledged the contributions of two past players, Erica Baran and Jenelle Kapalinski. Shelton explained the lasting impact that both players’ effort and commitment had had on the development of the successful women’s team, and he announced their induction into the Ring of Honor, a recognition that henceforth will be awarded to players whose lasting contributions to the program serve as an example to future teams.

Shelton also presented a commemorative game ball to Sharon Houston in recognition of her recent achievement of 2,500 points and 1,500 rebounds in her career. Houston is the all-time leading scorer in Lady RedHawks’ history. IU Northwest also recognized student-athletes, including cheerleaders and dance squad members, who have maintained excellent academic standing with a 3.0 or above grade-point average.


Media Contact

Erika Rose
Office of Marketing and Communications

Additional Article Photos

IU Northwest file photo
Associate Head Coach Loretta Soria (left), and Head Coach Ryan Shelton (right), recognize the contributions of past players Jenelle Kapalinski (inside left) and Erica Baran (inside right).