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#21 IU East hands #25 HU fifth straight loss

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RICHMOND, Ind. – It was another NAIA Top 25 battle that didn’t favor the #25 HU women’s basketball team. Up against #21 IU East Thursday night at Lingle Court, the Foresters suffered a 101-92 loss for their fifth straight, four of which have come against ranked opponents.

With this loss, HU draws even on the year at 7-7 while IU East improves to 12-4.

Despite shooting 71.4 percent in the second half, the Foresters couldn’t overcome the 12-point deficit from the first 20 minutes. The Red Wolves came out firing on all cylinders to start the contest for an 18-6 advantage after the first five minutes. While Coach Culler’s squad closed the gap to seven on several occasions before halftime, it was that early 12-point spread that stood the test of time as HU headed into the locker room down 49-37.

Junior Hailey Krewald carried the Foresters early on by knocking down three triples in the first quarter on the way to scoring 13 points for the half in addition to handing out three assists.

Miranda Palmer stepped up in the second half to take over the scoring duties and will her team back into the game. The 5-6 guard was perfect in the third by hitting all five of her shots which included burying one from long range and completing a traditional three-point play to pave the way for one of HU’s most impressive shooting quarters of the year.

Palmer and crew missed just two of their 14 shots in the ten-minute segment but it was ball handling errors that did them in. After scratching and clawing their way to a 63-63 deadlock with just under two minutes left in the third, Huntington committed four consecutive turnovers to find themselves down eight, 71-63, heading into the fourth.

Back-to-back buckets by Palmer and Krewald trimmed the lead to five at 72-67 less than 45 seconds into final period but it would be as close as HU would get as three more TOs in the next four possessions spelled disaster for the visitors. IU East was able to bump the lead back to double digits and then hold the Foresters at arm’s length the rest of the way for the nine-point win.

Thirteen of the Red Wolves’ 30 fourth quarter points came by way of the charity stripe. They finished 27-for-35 from the line to more than double up the Foresters in attempts as HU went 14-for-16 for 87.5 percent.

As a team, Huntington shot 54.8 percent (34-for-62) from the field while IU East sizzled the nets for 56.7 percent (34-for-60). Palmer topped all scorers with 28 points with all but five coming in the second half. She also finished with game-high assists (6) and steals (4).

Krewald poured in ten more points including two from deep in the final 20 minutes to finish with a career-best 23 points. Allyson Trout chipped in 16 while Sarah Fryman added 13 and pulled down a team-high six boards.

Huntington committed 18 miscues to IU East’s 17. The Red Wolves also got the best of their visitors on the glass for a lopsided 35-22 rebounding advantage.

Danielle Wells came off the bench to finish with 23 points for IU East which included going 14-for-15 from the free throw line. Other double digit scorers for the Red Wolves included Suzy Wollenhaupt with 15, Tia King with 14, Kristen Miller with 13, Libby Springmier with ten and Keragan Niehoff with ten.

The Foresters wrap up 2016 by hosting Greenville College on Saturday at 2:00 p.m.

The Huntington University Foresters compete in 17 intercollegiate sports for men and women. In the past decade, Huntington has produced 38 NAIA All-America honors and 254 All-America Scholar Athlete honors. Huntington University is a comprehensive Christian college of the liberal arts offering graduate and undergraduate programs in more than 70 academic concentrations. U.S. News & World Report ranks Huntington among the best colleges in the Midwest.