Ford & Fosdick Lead Bears to 68-64 Win at Utah Valley State
OREM, Utah - Sophomore center Nicole Ford scored a career-high 19 points and the University of Northern Colorado women's basketball team tallied a 68-64 win over Utah Valley State College on Saturday night at the McKay Events Center.
Ford found the surroundings perfect to her liking as she drained four three-pointers in her first four shot attempts of the game. Coming into the contest Ford had made only one three-pointer in 13 career attempts.
"Although she had not done that in a game, we knew that Nicole can shoot the ball when she's open," head coach Ron Vlasin said.
The Bears took a five-point lead into the second half but the Wolverines rallied and took a 43-42 lead with 14:08 remaining in the game. But a 9-2 run led by sophomore guard Jena Fosdick put the Bears back on top in the contest. Fosdick drilled a three from the left corner and sophomore Kendra Lambrecht drained a three to give the Bears a 51-45 lead with 11:29 left in the game.
Utah Valley State then went on an 10-0 run to take a 55-51 lead with 6:25 remaining in the contest. The Bears did not score from the 11:29 mark until the 6:04 mark of the second half when Fosdick made one of two free throws.
Fosdick then followed up her free throw with a three-pointer to knot the game at 55-55, but UVSC's Courtney Lynn drained a three to put the Wolverines back on top.
Northern Colorado refused to quit and notched a 9-2 run to give the Bears a 64-60 lead with 2:05 to go. During the 9-2 run the Bears got baskets from Lambrecht and a huge three-pointer from Fosdick at the top of the key.
UVSC's Kaydee Allred hit a shot in the paint with 42.4 seconds left, but Fosdick hit a runner in the lane with 17.6 seconds to put the Bears back up by four at 66-62. Allred swished a pair of free throws with 10.4 seconds to cut the lead back to two at 66-64.
But with ice in her veins, sophomore guard Bailey Dillon calmly sank two free throws with nine seconds left to salt the game away.
"I'm really proud of how we hung in there when we could have folded," Vlasin said. "Fosdick was huge with her three-pointer and drives in the last two minutes. Dillon sealed the win with her two big free throws. We were only up two at the time and those were really big for her to step up to the line and make them with the game on the line. Dani Veal also came up big for us down the stretch as she grabbed a couple of rebounds and knocked away a loose ball to give us an extra possession."
While Ford led the team with 19 points and nine rebounds, Fosdick also produced a solid outing with 15 points and a team-high four assists. Allred led UVSC with 18 points, while Miriam Palkki notched a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds.
Northern Colorado moved to 10-14 on the season, while Utah Valley State fell to 2-21 on the year.
Northern Colorado will travel to College Park, Md., for a contest with the University of Maryland on Monday night. The Bears will then return to Utah Valley State next Thursday-Saturday to take part in the NCAA Division I Independent Tournament.
NOTES: Northern Colorado drained eight first-half three-pointers en route to a 38-33 halftime advantage over the Wolverines ... Ford led the Bears with 17 first half points ... Northern Colorado scored a 75-57 win over Utah Valley State on Jan. 29 in Greeley. UNC now leads the all-time series, 3-1.