The Student News Site of Northern Michigan University

The North Wind

The North Wind

The North Wind

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Rachel Pott
Rachel Pott
News Writer

I am a marketing major about to start my second year at Northern Michigan University, however, this will be my third year in college. I previously attended a small community college...

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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.

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Women lose two, still in GLIAC hunt

The NMU women’s basketball team dropped both games last weekend but remain tied with Grand Valley for the second spot in the GLIAC North as GVSU also dropped their games. The Wildcats will finish out the regular season at home this weekend.
On Thursday, Feb. 18, the Wildcats were defeated by the Chargers of Hillsdale College (13-11 overall, 13-7 GLIAC), 66-83, which are the most points allowed by the ’Cats during regulation this season. Senior forward Christa Erickson led with 14 points, followed by senior center Mariah Dunham with 11. Forward Angie Leckson had three steals.
NMU head coach Troy Mattson said the team could have played better defensively, and there were too many missed offensive opportunities.

Center Angie Leckson goes up for a basket against Grand Valley State. Leckson is averaging 6.2 points and 4.5 rebounds on the year with 17 blocks for the Wildcats. // Justin Key/NW

“The effort, the energy and the commitment was right, we just had a problem with executing,” Mattson said.
The ’Cats were also defeated by the University of Findlay Oilers (18-7 overall, 13-7 GLIAC) on Saturday, Feb. 20, 44-55. Dunham led with 14 points, followed by sophomore guard Elicia Derusha with 11. Derusha and Leckson also had two blocks each.
On Thursday, Feb. 25, the Wildcats will take on the Saginaw Valley State Cardinals (7-18 overall, 5-15 GLIAC) at 5:30 p.m. in the Berry Events Center. The last matchup between these two teams was a close overtime victory for NMU, 69-67. Mattson said the Wildcats need to be ready for a challenge.
“We’re going to play tough defense and make sure we get good shots down the court,” he said.
The ’Cats will finish the regular season against the Lake Superior State University Lakers (14-10 overall, 11-9 GLIAC) on Saturday, Feb. 27 at 11 a.m. in the Berry Events Center. While the Wildcats bested LSSU on Saturday, Jan. 21, 64-56, the Lakers are on a four-game winning streak after defeating GVSU. However, LSSU will have to take on Michigan Tech before playing the Wildcats.
Mattson said the team isn’t going to change much offensively or defensively, but rather the amount of intensity and execution.
“We just need to play better than what we have as of late. Both teams are playing extremely well, and are playing very confidently,” Mattson said. “We’re going to be in for a battle both nights.”
Senior center Angie Leckson said the team wants to progress strongly into the postseason and they know what they have to do to achieve that goal.
“Right now we just have to practice really hard to get [the team] going again,” Leckson said.
Saturday, Feb. 27 is also Senior Day, where fans will be able to get into women’s and men’s basketball, as well as hockey, with only their hockey ticket.
Leckson said Senior Day is an important day to look back upon but that on the day itself, the game is the focus.
“Senior Day is important, but what’s more important is winning that game,” she said.
Mattson said in the best scenario, the ’Cats win both games, taking the No. 2 seed and hosting the first postseason game. If the games go the other way, however, there would be a different outcome.
“Worst case scenario is we’re the No. 5 seed and we have to go somewhere to play. There are lots of scenarios with two games left,” he said.
The GLIAC tournament quarterfinals will begin on Tuesday, March 2.
With the postseason coming up, Leckson said she’s not thinking about the end of her basketball career because she wants it to continue, and that while it inevitably will end, she’s glad she’ll be able to smile at the memories.
“Basketball has given me everything. It’s taught me work ethic and how to be determined,” she said. “This team is my family, and I’ve learned so much from them, too.”

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