HUNTINGTON, Ind. - It was another strong second half for the HU women’s basketball team as they pulled away from Mount Vernon Nazarene University (1-8, 0-3) for a 77-60 win Saturday afternoon at Platt Arena. With this win, the Foresters improve to 8-3 overall, 3-0 in conference play.
After enjoying a five-point advantage of 35-30 through the first twenty minutes, Huntington spent the final stanza building on that lead for the lopsided victory. The Foresters outscored their visitors by 12 in the second half thanks in large part to the trio of Courtney Baker, Pazia Speed and Amelia Recker as they combined to score 28 of HU’s final 42 points.
Recker’s back-to-back buckets in the 17th minute gave her team a permanent double digit lead of 45-34 by the 17:22 mark but it was Baker who proved to be HU’s main catalyst in the period as she netted 12 points, ripped down six rebounds, swiped four steals and dished out four steals.
The 5-5 guard finished the game with 16 points, seven rebounds, seven assists and five steals. Speed tallied a game-high 21 points to go along with four steals. Recker tossed in 13 points and corralled a team-high eight rebounds, four of which were offensive. Miranda Palmer came off the bench to establish a new career-best of 11 points.
The Foresters are currently 18th in the nation in field goal percentage (.444) and they lived up to that billing by shooting right on that mark, going 28-for-63 for 44.4 percent. Culler’s squad was also solid from the line where they connected on 16 of their 18 attempts for 88.9 percent. They committed nine turnovers to MVNU’s 22 and outrebounded the Cougars 31-29.
The game featured only two ties and four lead changes, all of which occurred in the opening six minutes of play. Speed knocked down her second of three first half triples at the 13:47 mark to put HU on top for good at 14-11. Megan Beidelman scored 11 of her team-high 17 points in the opening period to keep the pesky Cougars within striking distance but it wouldn’t last as the Foresters made several key defensive adjustments at break to muffle MVNU offensively.
In addition to her 17 points, Beidelman grabbed ten boards for the game’s only double double. The Cougars also got double digit production from Amy Daniels and Courtney Christie as each finished with 12.
Coming up on finals week, the Foresters are off until Saturday when they travel to IU Southeast for a 1:00 p.m. tip-off.