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The North Wind

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Dallas WiertellaApril 30, 2024

’Cats stay hot, look to defend home court

There hasn’t been much time to rest for the NMU women’s basketball team as they made two separate trips to Ohio in a seven-day stretch.

The good news for the ’Cats is they were able to win three of their four games, including a 58-57 win in the school’s first ever matchup with Walsh University on Thursday, Nov. 29.

The Wildcats and the Cavaliers traded leads seven times, but in the final 1:30 it was NMU coming up with the big shots.

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Sophomore guard Lauren Gruber nailed a 3-pointer to tie the game. 56-56, with 1:29 left in regulation.

Walsh made it to the foul line with 14 seconds left, but only sunk one free-throw.

Head coach Troy Mattson put the ball in the hands of sophomore guard Alyssa Colla for the last play. Mattson said the Cavaliers stopped the intended play.

“I saw it get knocked loose with about three seconds and then I said we lost, and I turned my head and all of the sudden I saw that she was shooting it,” Mattson said. “She ended up on the block and kind of leaned in against two or three people and made it off the backboard. It was a heck of a play to get the ball back and get the ball in the basket.”

Colla’s shot ended up being the dagger as a last second Walsh shot fell short, giving NMU the 58-57 win. Gruber said the ’Cats didn’t lose focus.

“It didn’t really work,” Colla said. “Anna Liewen went backdoor so I tried passing to her and it got fumbled around. I don’t really know how I got it back.”

There was seven lead changes and three ties during the game and no team ever lead by more than eight points through the game. Gruber said the ’Cats had the right mindset in the win.

“Overall I think we had the mentality to win that game,” Gruber said. “I mean at every timeout, everyone was screaming ‘we’re not going to lose’ and we were all just really into it.”

The backcourt of Colla and Gruber led the ’Cats in scoring that game 10 and nine points respectively. Gruber also added seven rebounds to pace NMU on the glass.

On Saturday, Dec. 1 NMU took on Malone University in search of a fourth straight road win. The ’Cats were unable to climb back into the game after a Malone run in the middle of the second half, dropping the contest, 64-56.

Mattson said the travel schedule was wearing on his team by the fourth game but it was a good learning experience for the ’Cats.

“We had no energy in the Malone game and it really affected not only the way we looked out on the court but also our mental approach,” Mattson said. “We looked very tired and sluggish and we didn’t play well. If you want to be a great team you have to be able to overcome those things, but we looked that way.”

NMU returns home this week for a pair of GLIAC games. At 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 6 they take on Hillsdale and at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 8 they face Findlay. Both games are in The Berry Events Center.

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