watches Steven Wright finish off two of his 17 points during
NKU’s 94-58 win Saturday night. Wright, who averages
16.4 points per game, has eight dunks this season.
Ky. - A night before Christmas Eve, Northern Kentucky University
celebrated the holiday in style against the UC-Clermont basketball
team. And the Norse were in a giving mood Saturday evening in Regents
First and foremost,
NKU gave visiting UC-Clermont a 94-58 beating, and the Norse rewarded
their fans with plenty of Christmas cheer along the way. Included
on the NKU gift list Saturday night was:
Wright highlight reel, complete with a couple of vicious first-half
dunks. Wright finished with 17 points, seven assists, four rebounds,
two steals and no turnovers in 23 minutes of action.
exhibition from Kevin Schappell, who drained four 3-point shots
en route to a game-high 18 points. Schappell also grabbed a team-leading
nine rebounds, including five offensive boards.
solid performance from Vincent Humphrey, who scored 14 points, grabbed
eight rebounds and dished out three assists. Humphrey also hit four
3-pointers as the Norse shot 15-for-36 from long range.
victory following a loss at No. 9 Findlay last Tuesday night. NKU
held a double-digit lead in that game in the second half, but the
Norse fell victim to the Oilers' home mystique (45 consecutive victories)
and ability to get to the free-throw line.
is important because you just want to get back on the floor and
win some games," NKU head coach Dave Bezold said. "It
was a good pick-me-up, but, again, we don’t want to have to
do this every other game. We want to string together some victories
now, and we have to do it on the road."
NKU (6-3) bolted
out to a 14-2 lead against UC-Clermont as Humphrey and Wright each
scored five points in the first four minutes of the game. Wright
later took a bounce pass on the right baseline from Harrison Morton
and soared in for a two-handed dunk to make it 21-5.
16 points before halftime as the Norse took a 48-27 lead at the
break. The only suspense remaining in the second half was if NKU
- 9-for-19 from 3-point range during the opening 20 minutes - would
be able to break the school record for treys (18) in a game.
open shots because our guards penetrated and kicked it out,"
said Schappell, who was 4-for-8 from long range. "Then they
went to a zone and we were finding the open man."
Schappell drives to the basket against UC-Clermont. Schappell
finished with 18 points and hit four 3-pointers.
with 23 assists as a team, and the extra pass usually meant a wide-open
look at the basket.
another thing that shows that everyone was sharing the ball, and
it’s a team game," said NKU's Mark Hawkins, who finished
with 13 points. "Nobody was trying to do too much."
added eight points and six rebounds for NKU, which is 2-0 all-time
against UC-Clermont (9-8). Harrison Morton and Anthony Teague each
scored seven points, and David McFarland scored six points. Billy
Finnell dished out four assists for NKU, which shot 50.7 percent
from the field and won the rebounding battle by a 45-33 margin.
in practice we battle and fight until the ball goes out of bounds,"
Schappell said of NKU's tenacity on the glass. "Tonight you
saw Harrison Morton diving out of bounds for a rebound. Everybody
does that and it just carries over from practice into the games."
now scored 34 points during the past two games, and Bezold is pleased
to see his senior guard find his shot.
starting to, like all of our players, find a role and get into the
rhythm of the season," Bezold said of Schappell. "He’s
going to finish the year off being very consistent, and that’s
what we’re looking forward to. Kevin is a fifth-year guy,
and he knows what he’s supposed to do. He’s a kid that
works extremely hard, and the results are starting to come for him."
scored 17 points to lead UC-Clermont, which was the national runner-up
in the United States Collegiate Athletic Association last season.
The Cougars, however, shot just 32.8 percent from the field and
were 12-for-21 at the free-throw line against NKU.
not to look at the scoreboard, but obviously you have to in order
to see if you won or lost," Bezold said, "but we were
working on making sure we were solid on both ends of the floor for
40 minutes. That’s what cost us two critical games against
good teams. We’ve had spurts where we’ve been very good
and very bad. We were just working on our consistency tonight. I
was happy about that part of this win."
NKU will take
off for Christmas and then hit the road for Florence, Ala., and
a non-conference battle at North Alabama on Dec. 30. The Norse then
resume Great Lakes Valley Conference play Jan. 4 with a road game
at Wisconsin-Parkside. Two days later, NKU will play at Lewis.
NKU's next home
game is Jan. 9, when Kentucky Christian visits Regents Hall for
a non-conference game.