INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - It was a battle to the bitter end, just the type of game fans have come to expect when the Forester women’s basketball team rendezvous to Marian University’s PE Center. It favored HU, 62-55, this time around and marks Huntington’s second consecutive road win over the Knights.
While the Foresters shot an uncharacteristic 55.6 percent (10-for-18) from the line, the one thing that remained constant was their defense. For the game HU held the Knights to just 32.9 percent from the floor. Coach Culler’s squad was even more relentless down the stretch as they held MU to a single field goal in the final 3:25 to pull away for the win.
Down by one, 53-52, Pazia Speed and Kelsey Hubble teamed up to hit clutch shots. Speed converted a three-point play, Hubble knocked down her fourth long ball of the night and Speed got a 15-footer to fall with the shot clock winding down to give their team a comfortable lead of 60-55 with 1:27 remaining before Courtney Baker knocked down a pair of freebies to ice the game.
A seven point difference at the final buzzer proved to be one of the game’s largest lead in a contest that Huntington lead most of the way. In addition to their brief advantage of 53-52, Marian’s only other leads held for only a few possessions within the first five minutes of each half and just before the halftime buzzer.
The night’s largest lead came on the heels of a 13-4 run spearheaded by six points from Jaclene Bonnema that resulted in a 31-23 advantage for the Foresters with 54 ticks left in the first stanza. Bonnema finished the half with eight points but it was Hubble’s trio of threes that paced the visitors to a 31-26 lead by intermission.
Speed netted a game-high 17 points and dished out six assists. Hubble tossed in another 12 and Baker finished with 11. Bonnema added a team-high nine rebounds to go along with her eight points.
As a team, the Foresters shot 41.4 percent from the field which included going 4-for-8 behind the arc. HU committed a season-low seven turnovers and scored 14 points off 13 Marian miscues but lost the rebounding battle, 50-39.
Faith Reece topped the Knights with 16 points. Her only teammate to score in double digits was Claire Holba with ten.
With this win, Huntington improves to 6-3 overall, 1-0 in league play while Marian drops to 3-5 overall, 0-1 in Crossroads action.
HU breaks for Thanksgiving before hosting Spring Arbor on December 4 at 7:00 p.m.