Down its senior captain, the Northern Arizona women's basketball team was not intimidated with the Big Sky regular-season champion standing across them. A blistering second quarter by the Vandals, however, blew open Tuesday's quarterfinal matchup and Idaho handed Northern Arizona a 90-73 defeat inside the CenturyLink Arena.
Northern Arizona's season ended with a 13-18 overall record as the team won seven of its last 11 games to close. Also, the Lumberjacks picked up their first tournament win in 12 years on Monday.
On Tuesday, however, the top-seeded Vandals blitzed the Lumberjacks in the second quarter, outscoring the Jacks by 21.
"I'm super proud of the team and the resilience they showed," said Lumberjacks head coach Loree Payne. "With Kaleigh (Paplow) going down, they battled together. We were short on our lineup, but they played incredibly hard the entire game. It's sad when the season comes to an end, especially because we were just getting our momentum going, but we finished the season very strong."
The Lumberjacks were without senior Kaleigh Paplow due to injury. Freshman Regan Schenck led the young Lumberjacks with career highs of 24 points, 12 rebounds and six assists. Schenck concluded her debut season with her first double-double and was turnover-free.
"(Regan) put up some incredible numbers," Payne said. "She stepped up initially and hit some big shots out of the gate. As a freshman, I couldn't ask for her to have a better performance and that's great to see moving forward as a leader for our program."
Schenck and Peyton Carroll shouldered the load for Northern Arizona from the starting, combining for all but two of the Lumberjacks' first-quarter scores. Schenck registered 11 points in the first 10 minutes, while Carroll came off the bench to net eight points, and the Jacks had a 21-20 lead after the first period after six lead changes.
Northern Arizona's hot start was quickly erased by Idaho as the Vandals put up the highest-scoring quarter by a Lumberjack opponent this season. Idaho missed just four shots, going 13 for 17, and it outscored Northern Arizona 36-15 in the period.
The No. 1 seed eventually took a 56-36 lead into the break.
Schenck and Jacey Bailey combined for seven of Northern Arizona's eight 3-pointers. The Vandals had a significant rebounding advantage, though, 48-37. Both teams combined for just 14 turnovers.
Northern Arizona had four players in double-digit scoring led by Schenck's high of 24. Bailey had 14 followed by 13 from Khiarica Rasheed and 11 from Carroll.
"I want the (offseason) to start right now," Payne said. "The future is very bright for NAU women's basketball. There are a lot of sophomores and freshmen on the floor. It's bittersweet to say goodbye to this season, but we're very excited about what's ahead."
The Lumberjacks finished in last place overall as a team at the the Wildcat Invitational at the Sewailo Golf Club in Tucson on Tuesday.
Arizona State won, going 2-under par as a team for a tally of 886.
NAU's top golfer at the conclusion of the tournament was Elle Kocourkova, who tied for 55th. Kocourkova shot for 19-over par throughout the tournament (235). During the final round of play she was 4-over par (76).
Ashley Croft and Aleksandra Chekalina were not far behind Kocourkova as they each went 22-over par for a tally of 238 and a tie for 67th place.
The golf team will return to the course on March 23 and 24 when it hosts its only home tournament this season, the Red Rocks Invitational in Cornville at the Agave Highlands Golf Course.
Sophomore Bernie Andre has been honored as the 2018-19 Big Sky Conference Co-Newcomer of the Year, as well as a member of the All-Big Sky Third Team, conference officials announced on Tuesday.
Andre becomes the third player in NAU history to be recognized with the honor, joining Tyrone Bazy (2007) and Quinton Upshur (2014).
Sharing the award with Andre is Southern Utah's Cameron Oluyitan and Montana's Kendal Manuel.
The All-Big Sky teams, as well as the postseason award winners, were selected by the Big Sky Conference's men's basketball head coaches.
Andre has enjoyed a breakthrough season for the Lumberjacks as he currently leads NAU with a 13.6 points per game scoring average as well as 8.4 rebounds per contest -- which ranks third overall among Big Sky leaders.
He has posted the third-most double-doubles in the conference with his current total of seven and has amassed double-figure points in 22 games this season -- including 15 of the last 19 overall. He has led NAU in scoring on 12 occasions and in rebounding 19 times.
The versatile forward is shooting a solid .450 (152-of-338) from the field and has made the fourth-most three pointers on the squad with 29. Andre became the first NAU player to be honored as the Big Sky Player of the Week in over four years on Feb. 26.
The No. 8-seeded Lumberjacks begin postseason play on Wednesday when they take on No. 9 Sacramento State for an 8:30 a.m. tip in the opening round of the 2019 Big Sky Conference tournament at CenturyLink Arena in Boise, Idaho.
The fifth annual Northern Arizona Lumberjack Cross Country Camp will take place July 17-21.
Get the opportunity to train and work with the three-time defending NCAA Division I Cross Country National Champions and coaching staff in Flagstaff.
Guest speakers with world and Olympic titles to their name will be present.
Michael Smith, director of cross country and track and field, will be hosting the camp with assistant coach Becca DeLoache.
Campers will be part of a camp that has a focus on specialized training, continued running education and individualized attention. Other highlights include strength training specific for endurance athletes, training plan design, nutrition session and biomechanical factors in running.