Kent State Women’s Basketball’s Winning Streak Ends With Loss At Northern Illinois
Llobet's 20-point effort not enough for Golden Flashes.
DEKALB, Ill. – The Kent State women's basketball team's three-game winning streak was snapped with a 66-55 Mid-American Conference interdivision loss to Northern Illinois Saturday (Jan. 28) at the Convocation Center.
The loss snapped a four-game winning streak for the Golden Flashes (5-13, 4-4 MAC) over the Huskies (9-11, 3-5 MAC). The Flashes outshot the Huskies, 44%-40.8%, and won the turnover battle, 11-13, but the battle of the boards proved to be Kent State's downfall. Kent State, which had outrebounded the opposition, 186-161, in its five victories in 2011-12, lost the rebounding battle to Northern Illinois, 39-22, and managed just two offensive rebounds.
Freshman guard Itziar Llobet (Sant Cugat de Valles, Spain) led Kent State with 20 points, reaching double figures for the eighth time this season and second straight game. Junior forward Diamon Beckford (Upper Darby, Pa.) and junior guard Trisha Krewson (Sandusky, Ohio) each totaled eight points.
The Huskies came firing out of the gates, opening the contest on a 27-10 run that included five successful three pointers in as many attempts. The Golden Flashes buckled down, though, and ended the first half on a furious 17-5 rally over the final 11:17. The comeback bid included treys by Llobet, freshman guard Jamie Hutcheson (Ancaster, Ontario) and junior guard Tamzin Barroilhet (Sainte Maxime, France) and sent Kent State into halftime trailing by only four points at 32-27
Northern Illinois upped its advantage back to double digits with 10:57 to play in the second half, opening the final 20 minutes of regulation on a 14-8 run for a 46-35 lead. A three and a layup by Llobet cut Kent State's deficit to five with 8:38 to go, but the Huskies built their lead back up to 11 points at 58-48 with 2:13 to play. Kent State made another push over the next minute, though, using a layup by Hutcheson and a three by Beckford to make it a six-point contest at 59-53 with 1:20 to play. Unfortunately for the Flashes, Northern Illinois knocked down seven of its eight free throw attempts over the final minute to seal the victory.
Three Huskies finished in double digits in scoring to spark the victory for Northern Illinois. Senior guard Courtney Shelton tallied a game-high 23 points. Freshman guard Amanda Corral and freshman forward Claire Jakubicek added 14 and 13, respectively.
Kent State returns to the M.A.C. Center for a two-game homestand against MAC West foes, hosting Ball State in the first contest Wednesday (Feb. 1) at 7 p.m. The Flashes are one victory away from reaching the 600-win mark in program history. All fans in attendance will receive Kent State crazy hair and will once again have the opportunity to participate in the always intense Basketball Bingo during the game. Tickets start at just $5. For more information contact the Kent State Athletics Ticket Office at (330) 672-2244.