Women's basketball uses a big run to win fourth straight
By HEATHER KENNEDY
OGDEN, Utah -- "We get by with a little help from our friends."
The Beatles sang about needing help back in 1967 and the same holds true 46 years later. Help on Saturday for the Northern Colorado Women's Basketball team came from fifth-year senior Victoria Timm (Haxtun, Colo.), who recorded a career-best 11 assists in the 65-47 victory at Weber State.
The Bears (11-9, 8-3 Big Sky Conference) have now won four straight games, and earned their first road sweep of the year after defeating Idaho State on Thursday night. It is also the seventh-straight victory over the Wildcats (0-21, 0-12 Big Sky). With the win, the Bears move into second place in the Big Sky Conference standings, a half-game ahead of Montana State and Eastern Washington.
The four wins in a row ties for the longest streak of the season, and the Bears return home to host Montana on Thursday in an attempt to win their fifth. Montana cruised to a 25-point win over Eastern Washington earlier in the day to move to 10-2 in Big Sky action. Game time on Thursday is scheduled for 7 pm.
Northern Colorado's defense was once again extremely solid as they forced three shot clock violations in the game and held the Wildcats to just 34 percent shooting from the floor, including just .292 in the second half. The Bears also out-rebounded Weber State 42-26, the 12th consecutive game the Bears have won the battle of the boards.
"It was our defense that won this game," Head Coach Jaime White said. "Our defense created some offense and we did a good job of getting the ball inside, where Lauren Oosdyke had a great game. I thought Lauren really stepped up, especially scoring-wise."
The 11 assists for Timm are the second-highest total in the school's Division I history and just one off the record of 12 by Courtney Stoermer against Sacramento State on March 8, 2008. Timm also added six points, seven rebounds and two steals in the game.
Oosdyke (Coto de Caza, Calif.) led all players in the scoring column with 22 points, marking the fifth time this year she's scored 20 or more in a game. Oosdyke also led the game with nine rebounds, narrowly missing her second double-double of the year.
Sophomore center Stephanie Lee (Casper, Wyo.) concluded a great weekend with 14 points and four rebounds, shooting 7-for-12 from the floor. Junior guard D'shara Strange (Fort Carson, Colo.) also hit double figures with 11 points and had four of the team's eight steals on the afternoon.
"I thought getting those stops on defense gave us a little more confidence on offense," White said. "And then Victoria Timm having 11 assists was huge."
The win didn't come easy for Northern Colorado, despite the 18-point differential on the final scoreboard. With 11:36 remaining in the game, the Bears actually trailed 39-37, but switched to a zone defense and went on a 22-4 run – including eight by Lee – to take control of the contest. The Bears also held Weber State to just one field goal over the final 12:31 of the contest, as six of the Wildcats eight final points came from the free throw line.
"We went to our zone in the second half and I thought Weber State didn't like that very much," White said.
Weber State was led by Jalen Carpenter with 14 points and six rebounds, while Kalie Matthews had 13 points and eight boards.
"We turned the ball over a little too much," White concluded. "But I think the second game on the road is always going to be tough. Every team's good at home and we've got to continue to get better, whether it's the first night or the second night."