Southern Utah's 12-2 run to close the game derailed the Northern Arizona women's basketball team on Saturday, with the Lumberjacks suffering a tough 82-76 overtime loss in the Walkup Skydome.
Northern Arizona's second consecutive loss dropped its record to 5-9 overall and 1-4 in Big Sky Conference play.
"The difference in the game were our turnovers and our lack of boxing out," said Lumberjacks head coach Loree Payne. "We gave up 15 offensive boards and way too many second-chance opportunities. We couldn't take care of the ball and we made some critical turnovers down the stretch that really hurt us. When we get back on track, we need to make sure we get back to basics of taking care of the ball and valuing each possession."
Northern Arizona erased a nine-point, fourth-quarter deficit but could not secure the victory in regulation despite holding a two-point lead with under a minute remaining. Kaleigh Paplow, who notched a season-best 26 points, powered her way to the rim for the go-ahead basket with 1:22 left in the fourth quarter.
The Thunderbirds turned a steal off a Lumberjacks inbound into a tying layup with 25.1 seconds remaining. After a timeout to advance the ball, the home team held for the final shot but Paplow's potential game-winner missed.
Caitlin Malver drilled a 3-pointer to open the overtime scoring and her team twice held leads of four points in the extra period. The last came at 74-70 with 2:31 to play following a pair of free throws by Paplow. Southern Utah tied the game before proceeding to hit two 3s to go up 78-74 with under a minute left.
In all, Southern Utah ran off 10 straight points until Paplow snapped the outburst with a layup. Four of NAU's 22 turnovers came in the final two minutes of the game and wound up hampering the Lumberjacks' chances to take two of three games on their homestand.
Paplow finished with 26 points and 11 rebounds, marking her third double-double of the season. Her 26 points marked a team season-best and brought her within 13 of the 1,000 career milestone. She finished 9 for 18 from the field and a career-best 8 for 8 at the foul line while also recording five assists and three steals.
Khiarica Rasheed also tallied a double-double performance with 17 points and a season-best 10 boards. It was the first time this season that NAU had a pair of players with double-doubles in the same game. Malvar tied a season-high with four treys on her way to 12 points. Malvar also notched five assists.
NAU shot 45.2 percent after halftime and finished shooting 42.4 percent for the game. While Southern Utah only shot 39.2 percent, the Thunderbirds shot 38.9 percent from behind the arc. The Thunderbirds' 3-point percentage was the best an opponent has shot against the Jacks this season.
Turnovers also played a huge role in the game as NAU's 22 were just one shy of its season-worst. Southern Utah was plus-eight in the category and as a result, outscored Northern Arizona 19-9 in points off turnovers, including 8-0 in the overtime period.
Southern Utah led by 11 in the first quarter, but NAU scored the final five points to cut the Thunderbirds' lead to 18-12 heading into the second period. NAU's defense clamped down on Southern Utah in the second quarter, eventually allowing the Jacks to take a 26-25 advantage into halftime.
After the Thunderbirds shot 50 percent in the first period, they made just 2 of 16 from the floor in the second quarter. Northern Arizona used a 12-0 run, which included a pair of three-point plays by Peyton Carroll and Paplow, to snag a 24-20 lead while the Lumberjacks held the Thunderbirds scoreless for nearly six minutes.
Paplow and Rasheed, along with Carroll's season-high seven boards, helped NAU outrebound Southern Utah, 45-43, although the Thunderbirds pulled down 15 rebounds on the offensive end. Still, NAU has now outrebounded its opponents in four straight games.
The Lumberjacks will head on the road for four straight games over the next two weeks, starting with a swing to Sacramento State and Portland State next Thursday and Saturday respectively.
Southern Utah sophomore Dre Marin hit a step-back jumper with 1.5 seconds left in regulation to lift the Thunderbirds to an 84-82 victory over Northern Arizona on Saturday at the America Events Center.
Marin set up his heroics one possession earlier with a driving layup and foul, giving Southern Utah an 82-80 edge, before Lumberjacks junior Brooks DeBisschop deadlocked the game at 82-82 with 10 seconds remaining.
The game featured seven ties and 12 lead changes -- all of but one of each came in the final 20 minutes of action.
"You can't win a game on the road if you decide not to guard," Lumberjacks head coach Jack Murphy said. "We let one get away that we should have had. You have to play both sides and defend for 40 minutes. I am proud of how the guys executed offensively, but we needed more effort on the defensive end."
The loss drops the Lumberjacks record to 4-11 overall and 2-3 in Big Sky Conference action. The defeat marked NAU's sixth straight in the all-time series versus the Thunderbirds, which moved to 7-7 overall and 2-3 in league games.
Northern Arizona, playing on the road, had one of its better shooting efforts of the season at 49.2 percent (30 of 61) from the field, and it matched a season-high with 13 made 3s.
The Lumberjacks also had their second game this season where a pair of players posted a double-double. Sophomore Bernie Andre tabbed his team-leading third of the season with 19 points and 10 rebounds, while shooting 8 of 10 overall and 2 of 3 from beyond the arc. Carlos Hines recorded 10 points and 10 assists for his first career double-double performance. The 10 helpers marked the most by an NAU player since JoJo Anderson dished out 10 on Dec. 14, 2016 vs. Arkansas Little Rock.
Junior Ted McCree drilled 5-of-11 3-point attempts en route to a career-best 19 points, while Luke Avdalovic notched 16 on 6-of-9 shooting that included a 4-of-7 slip from 3-point range.
Southern Utah had a total of five players finish with double-figure scoring totals. Cameron Oluyitan posted a team-best 18 points, while dropping in 5-of-8 3s. Harrison Butler and Jacob Calloway each added 17 and Marin finished with 13, including the game winner. Andre Adams rounded out the Thunderbirds' scoring leaders with 11.
Northern Arizona came out strong in the second half by scoring eight of the initial 10 points and claiming its first lead of the contest by a 45-44 margin at the 19:00 mark. The Thunderbirds followed by opening a 12-point edge on the strength of a 15-3 burst before the Jacks battled back over the final eight minutes.
Southern Utah led for nearly the entire first half, while stretching its advantage to as many as 10 at the 11:02 mark. NAU responded with a 10-3 run midway through the half, which was sparked by 3-pointers from Bolton and Hines, to get within three before another trey by Hines deadlocked the score at 30-30 with 3:23 left before the break.
Both teams traded buckets over the final minutes before the Thunderbirds took a two-point edge into halftime at 42-40. The first half saw NAU connect on 9-of-18 shots from beyond the arc -- led by McCree who nailed 4-of-6 attempts from long distance in the opening 20 minutes.
The Lumberjacks will return home for the start of a four-game homestand on Thursday versus Sacramento State. Tip time is slated for 6:30 p.m. at the Walkup Skydome.
The Lumberjacks notched a pair of singles wins versus BYU on the second day of the Metroplex Mania at the SMU Tennis Complex. Junior Chiara Tomasetti and freshman Emilie Haakansson each picked up straight-set wins Saturday as the Lumberjacks continued play in their spring opening weekend.
Tomasetti, ranked No. 75 in the nation, earned her first singles win of the season at the No. 1 position. She knocked off BYU's Anastasia Abramyan, 6-4, 6-3, to rebound from her defeat on Friday.
Meanwhile, Haakansson won her second match in as many days, defeating Taylah Beckman. Haakansson won the first set easily and then won the second set in a tiebreak to sweep Beckman, 6-1, 7-6, at No. 5.
Sophomores Ellie Millard and Cora-Lynn von Dungern dropped their respective singles matches in three sets. Millard forced a third-set against Polina Malykh by winning the second , but fell 6-1, 3-6, 6-2 at No. 2.
Despite winning her first set, von Dungern fell to Samantha Smith at No. 3, 3-6, 6-3, 6-0.
In doubles, Northern Arizona faced SMU, with the Mustangs taking all three matches by a 6-1 score.
NAU will face Iowa and Northwestern State on Sunday to wrap up the weekend. Competition will begin at 8:30 a.m.
TRACK AND FIELD
The track and field teams had a strong showing at the Friday Night Duals meet at the Walkup Skydome on Friday.
NAU's top finisher in the men's shot put was Parker Joens with a mark of 17.60 meters to earn a fifth-place. Fellow sophomore Jake Arnold hit 15.84m to take seventh, with teammate Brady Williams throwing for 15.44m to take the last spot for the Jacks at ninth place. Arizona Wildcat sophomore Jordan Geist would have the best shot put throw of the day on the men's side with a mark of 20.27m.
Williams, Arnold and Joens all set personal bests for shot put.
NAU's Kevin Cooney placed fifth in the men's weight throw competition with a mark of 17.95m. Williams and fellow freshman William Beaudry placed sixth and seventh. Jacob Kaufman placed eighth with a mark of 16.01m.
In the women's shot put, freshman Matilde Roe placed seventh with a mark of 13.64m; UCLA sophomore Alyssa Wilson placed first in the shot put with a mark of 17.73m.
Helena McLeod placed fifth in the women's long jump competition with a mark of 5.60m for the Jacks. Kaitlyn Wayne's best mark was a 4.88m to earn a 21st-place finish. Jessica Barreira of Arizona State would take the top spot in that event with a mark of 5.82m.
In the women's 60m dash, Jasmine Malone took seventh at 7.54 seconds for Northern Arizona. Jada Jackson placed 11th and Clarissa Maxey placed in the top 20. Malone won the women's 300m with a time of 37.94 seconds.
Emma Sjolund led the field for NAU with a time of 5:29.31 in the mile to earn a third-place finish. Abby Riordan and junior Zoe Wall followed with fourth- and fifth-place results. Grand Canyon sophomore Cheyenne Walden placed first in the mile with a time of 5:22.13.
Ryan Lanley placed third in the men's mile to lead the Lumberjacks with a time of 4:29.75. Junior Palo Verde transfer Aldo Marquez placed fifth overall and Kyle Havriliak rounded out the finishes for NAU with a 13th-place finish. Grand Canyon senior Daniel Flores took first in the mile with a time of 4:28.74.
Northern Arizona had a total time of 12:31.83 in the women's distance medley for gold, almost 12 seconds better than runner-up Arizona State.
Maggie Carruth would continue to lead the way for the women with a 1:36.10 finish in the women's 600m race to take the top spot. Maxey was just over a second behind Carruth.
In the men's 60m hurdles Khalil Dorsey placed first in 8.09 seconds. Carter Bracken placed fourth with a time of 8.45 seconds.
Christopher Grant placed second in the men's 60m dash with a time of 6.80 seconds.
Five Lumberjack men placed in the top 10 in the 300m dash event. Tyren Wolfe crossed the finish line with a time of 34.50 to capture second place. Grant placed fifth with a time of 35.69 seconds. Freshman Michael Marchica (36.41 sec.), sophomore AJ Hollis (36.51 sec.) and Dorsey (36.54 sec.) followed up Wolfe and Grant with eighth, ninth and 10th-place finishes.
Obang Odol tied with Grand Canyon senior Christopher Linnin for second-place in the men's high jump competition with marks of 2.05m. Arizona junior Justice Summerset won the event with a mark of 2.15m.