When the NAIA 18th-ranked Foresters knocked off the University of St. Francis 75-58 in a Mid-Central Conference contest, few knew just how significant the victory really was. Not only did the win move HU into a tie for first place in the MCC standings, but it also was the first road win against the Cougars in more than 15 years.
Things got off to a typical start with St. Francis taking the early lead. Vini Dawson hit back-to-back threes to give the Cougars a 6-2 lead. But that is where the similarity to the past ended. From there the Foresters went on a 19-6 run to take a 21-12 lead eight minutes into the contest. Jamika Banks drained another trey to cut the margin to six, but it would be as close as St. Francis would get the remainder of the game.
Another 13-4 spurt gave HU its largest lead of the half at 34-19 with 1:45 left until intermission. Then after holding the MCC's leading scorer, Marie Kaufmann, to just four first half points and the Cougars to just 25% (7-27) shooting from the field, the Foresters took a 37-23 advantage to the locker room.
HU continued to pour it on with a 9-2 run over the first three minutes of the second half to increase the margin to 21 at 46-25. Over the next 12 minutes, the two teams traded baskets, until St. Francis put together an 8-0 run to pull within 14 with five minutes remaining. A pair of Jenna Donaldson free throws ended the Cougars streak and squelched the rally attempt. The Foresters then went 6 for 8 at the stripe over the final two minutes to seal the long-awaited victory.
HU's Sarah Miller topped all scorers in the game with 22 points on 7-12 shooting, including 3-5 from behind the arc. Donaldson added 19 points and Lauren Davenport finished with 14 points, six steals and five assists. Kaufmann paced St. Francis with 19 points and 10 rebounds and Banks contributed her own double-double with 12 points and a game-high 12 boards.
The Foresters went 25 for 48 from the field for 52.1% for the game while St. Francis was 19 for 61 for 31.1%. The Cougars won the battle of the boards 41-24.