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Davenport takes control in 3rd quarter for 56-50 win over NMU women’s basketball team

Makaylee Kuhn

GRAND RAPIDS — Davenport took control of the game in the third quarter and held off Northern Michigan University 56-50 in a GLIAC women’s basketball game played Friday.

The loss knocked NMU out of second place in the GLIAC North Division at 7-8. Wisconsin-Parkside now resides in second alone at 7-7 with Michigan Tech leading the division at 13-1. Davenport is last in the GLIAC South at 5-10.

More importantly for the conference tournament, the Wildcats are now tied for seventh overall in the league with eight teams making the GLIAC Tournament. The first team out is Ferris State at 5-9, while Saginaw Valley State is tied with Northern at 7-8. However, NMU is only one game out of fourth place, where Ashland and Wayne State are tied at 8-7.

On Friday, the Wildcats took a 10-9 lead on a 3-pointer by Vivianne Jende with 4 seconds left in the first quarter, then held the lead for nearly all of the second quarter, including 32-25 at halftime.

With NMU still leading 34-27, the host Panthers reeled off a quick 10-0 run in less than a minute and a half to take a 37-34 lead following Kenzie Wilkinson’s 3-point jumper with 6:27 left in the third period.

Elena Alaix

Davenport kept the lead the rest of the way, including 41-38 entering the final quarter. NMU did pull within two points twice down the stretch, 50-48 with 3:05 left on an Elena Alaix jump shot and 52-50 with 16 seconds remaining on a Taya Stevenson layup.

But the Panthers scored the game’s final four points on 4-of-4 free-throw shooting by Toni Grace in the last 10 seconds.

The Wildcats suffered from committing 19 turnovers, including seven in the crucial third quarter.

Makaylee Kuhn

led NMU with 24 points, including a pair of 3-pointers, and pulled down seven rebounds while making two assists. But she also committed eight turnovers.

Alaix added 10 points and a game-high eight rebounds, while Jende scored 10 points and had five rebounds as Northern held a 37-25 edge on the boards.

Vivianne Jende

Loni Sales paced Davenport with 15 points, while Grace had 14 along with a game-high five steals.

The teams meet again at 1 p.m. today back in Grand Rapids.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.

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