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NIU roundup: Huskies' season comes to an end with loss in first round of WNIT

The Northern Illinois women's basketball team's season came to an end with a 94-84 loss at South Dakota State in the first round of the WNIT on Thursday night.

It was the first postseason action for the Huskies (21-12) since the 1994-95 season.

Sophomore Courtney Woods scored 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds while making five 3-pointers on the night. Junior post Kelly Smith also added a double-double, scoring 19 points and added 10 rebounds in the loss.

Senior Ally Lehman, who played in the final game of her decorated career with the Huskies, had 16 points, six rebounds and five assists and sophomore Mikayla Voigt added 15 points for the Huskies.

The Jackrabbits (23-8) led for nearly the entire game and connected on 14 threes as a team, shooting 45.2 percent from beyond the arc.

The Huskies only trailed, 45-42, at halftime but South Dakota State, which improved to 13-1 at home this season, outscored Northern Illinois, 26-20, in the third quarter to cushion its lead.


Huskies still alive heading into Day 2: All five members of the Northern Illinois wrestling team participating in the NCAA Championships stayed alive after the first day of action on Thursday at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis.

Sophomore Steve Bleise (149) and seniors Trace Engelkes (174) and Shawn Scott (197) all won their first round match, but lost in the second round.

Bleise, who was seed No. 14, topped Old Dominion's Michael Hayes, 5-3, before falling to No. 3 Lavion Mayes (Missouri) in extra time, 2-1. Scott, who is seeded No. 11, also suffered a one-point loss in the second round, losing 3-2 to No. 6 Preston Weigel (Oklahoma State) after beating Cornell's Benjamin Honis, 9-2, in the first round.

Engelkes, who is No. 15 at 174, earned a third-period pin in his first match against Princeton's Jonathan Schleifer but had a lopsided loss in the second round against No. 2 Brian Realbuto (Cornell).

Freshman Brock Hudkins (125) and senior Shaun'Qae McMurtry (165) each lost in the first round but stayed alive with wins on Thursday night. Hudkins picked up a 6-0 win and McMurtry earned a 10-4 victory.


Huskies fall at Michigan: Northern Illinois jumped out to an early lead but allowed seven runs in the third inning and lost, 7-4, at No. 21 Michigan.

The Huskies (3-13) scored two runs in the top of the first inning and Roderick Bynum, Jesus Tovar and Samuel Vega each collected two hits in the loss. Blake Walker and Matthew Hoffman combined for five innings of scoreless relief on the mound.

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