Kent State outscored Northern Illinois, 28-16, in the fourth quarter Wednesday to bring the Huskies’ five-game winning streak to an end.
NIU grabbed a 69-67 lead on two Gabby Nikitinaite free throws with 6:59 left in the fourth quarter, but the Huskies shot only 4 of 18 from the floor in the final period to lose, 87-78.
Mikayla Voigt knocked down four 3-pointers and scored a team-high 26 points to go with four assists, three rebounds and three steals.
Nikitinaite scored 18 points and dished out a team-high five assists.
All nine Huskies who dressed scored, but only two Huskies were in double figures.
Kent State’s Ali Poole hit 3-pointers on three consecutive possessions to flip a 39-32 NIU lead to a 43-41 Kent State advantage at halftime.
It remained a one-possession game for most of the third quarter, before the Golden Flashes charged ahead on a 9-0 run in the fourth quarter thanks to an Alexa Golden 3-pointer, a Megan Carter layup and four points from Poole.
Asiah Dingle and Lindsey Thall each scored 17 points for Kent State.
The Huskies committed seven more turnovers than the Golden Flashes, 22-15.
“We just were not locked in consistently enough on the defensive end,” said NIU coach Lisa Carlsen. “We pride ourselves on taking care of the basketball, and we were soft with the ball tonight. Kent State played a great game. They were the more physical team, the more aggressive team.”
Sycamore edges DeKalb for title: The Spartans rolled a 7,207, beating out DeKalb’s 7,038 for the Northern Illinois Big 12 Conference East title.
Nicklaus Eberly rolled a 1,380 for the Barbs, taking second overall. Sycamore’s Jeffery Gasso was third, and teammate Mathew Cusumano was sixth with a 1,286.
The Spartans’ Christian Lanan was eighth with a 1,251, and DeKalb’s Michael Rae rolled a 1,227 to take ninth. Logan Zarek of the Barbs rounded out the top 10 with a 1,226.
Sycamore still perfect in conference: The Spartans knocked off Ottawa, 3,509-2,548.
Maddie Lathrop rolled a 640 to lead the Spartans, with Heather Carlson adding a 602.