Second Half Surge Propels Women's Basketball Past Illinois State 67-50
In the first game between the Princeton women's basketball team and Illinois State since the 1996 WNIT, it was the Tigers who employed a second half surge to propel past the Redbirds, 67-50, Wednesday evening in Normal, Ill. The victory snaps Princeton's two-game skid and improves the squad to 7-4 on the year.
Niveen Rasheed led the Tigers notching her third double-double of the year with 21 points, going 10-for-18 from the field, and 10 rebounds, as Princeton shot 47.5 percent (29-for-61) from the field, while holding ISU to 23.4 percent (15-for-64).
From the opening tip resulting in a Blake Dietrick triple, the Tigers forced a quickened pace as they jutted out to a 12-4 lead over the first five minutes of play.
Princeton remained in control for much of the half relying on a stringent defense, while connecting on shots and going on 9-2 run to expand its lead. Amidst that run, Megan Bowen established the Tigers' first double figure differential, 17-6, at 13:44.
The Redbirds contested Princeton's double-digit advantage as the half wound down, taking their first lead, 28-26, off a Katy Winge trey with 2:56 to play.
Both sides traded baskets over the final minutes of action to enter halftime knotted 32-32.
Like the first half, Princeton opened with the advantage and took off on a 7-0 run behind three Bowen points to reestablish its lead, 39-32, with 18:26 left in regulation.
She finished with 11 points and five boards.
Unable to sustain their early momentum surge, the Tigers saw Illinois State come as close as 41-38 at 14:37.
After nearly two scoreless minutes, Kate Miller buried a three to resurge the Tigers and open an 18-8 run, including a 10-0 rally, over 8:23 minutes to put Princeton up for good.
Freshman Michelle Miller tallied a career-high 14 points, going 6-for-9 from the field, including a pair of threes, while Dietrick had eight points in her second career start.
The Tigers only had four free throw attempts, going a perfect 4-for-4, to the Redbirds' 18-for-24. Princeton held differentials in rebounding (41-42), assists (13-7), blocks (8-1) and steals (7-6) in the all-around team victory.
The Tigers wrap up their Illinois state road trip in Chicago at DePaul (9-3) on Friday, Nov. 21 at 8 p.m. ET.