NMU Women’s Basketball wins home opener over Finland

MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) – The Northern Michigan University Women’s basketball team took to the Berry Events Center Hardwood for the first time on the 2022-23 season, besting the Finlandia Lions 76-49 on Tuesday. The Wildcats led by as many as 37 and did not trail in the contest. Kayla Tierney hit four triples for 14 points while Abi Fraaza also registered 14 along with 7 rebounds. The Wildcats are 4-1 on the season and will be home for their next two games coming up this weekend.

First Quarter The Wildcats started the home opener on an 8-0 run, with Kayla Tierney recording an early triple as well as a steal and lay in. After Finlandia got on the board, Northern put together another big run, this time of 13-0 variety to jump in front 21-2 with under three minutes left in the quarter. The Lions’ Elli Djerf put together consecutive steals that led to layups to cap off the quarter as Northern held a 23-8 edge. The Wildcats shot 53.3% while Finlandia was 25%.

Second Quarter Northern started the quarter on a 6-0 run, with three hoops in the paint from Fraaza and Jende. NMU was up 29-8 with 7:30 to play. Elena Alaix got it going off the bench for the Green and Gold, hitting three quick shots off the bench both in the paint and in the midrange. NMU was up 39-15 with three minutes to go. Alaix kept it going for the ‘Cats, knocking down a triple then getting a putback to go down low as she had 11 points in the quarter. At the half, NMU led 48-17 behind 11 from Alaix, 9 from Fraaza, and 8 from Tierney. The Wildcats shot 57.1% while the Lions were 24.1%.

Third Quarter Kayla Tierney continued her hot start from downtown, hitting nothing but net on her 3rd and 4th triples of the night to get her to 14 points. NMU was up 54-19 with 7:20 to play. Andrea Perez converted an and-one as the Wildcats kept it in cruise control, up 61-27 with 4:29 to go in the quarter. Reide Osterman took a trip to the Charity stripe with 2:27 on the clock, going 2-2 for her first career points. She followed it up with a drive to the hoop as the shot clock was winding down for her first field goal. The Wildcats led 65-30 heading to the final frame

.Fourth Quarter After an NMU hoop, Finlandia went on a 13-0 run backed by two Madelyn Johnson triples to make it 67-43 with 5:49 left in the contest. The Lions put together a strong final quarter, outscoring the Wildcats 19-11. NMU’s sizeable lead was more than enough, being triumphant 76-49.

Postgame Notes

  • Kayla Tierney and Abi Fraaza each scored 14 points to pace the Wildcats.
  • Elena Alaix added 11 points, all coming in the 2nd quarter.
  • As a team, the Wildcats shot 27-60 (45%) while Finlandia shot 17-58 (29.3%).
  • NMU was productive under the hoop, edging Finlandia 38-20 in paint scoring and leading in rebounds 47-31.

Up Next The Wildcats will return to action this Friday, November 26 as they will host Minnesota Duluth at 3 pm from the Berry Events Center.

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