Humphrey attempts a shot against Bellarmine during the second
half of NKU’s 75-71 loss to the Knights on Saturday.
Humphrey led the Norse with 18 points and hit four 3-pointers.
Ramstetter, NKU Sports Information
Ky. - Senior post player Dzaflo Larkai dominated the inside and
finished with 26 points as Bellarmine upset No. 22 Northern Kentucky
University, 75-71, Saturday night in Regents Hall.
Larkai, a 6-foot-8
center from London, England, entered the game averaging 16 points,
but he scored 15 in the first half against the Norse.
had to do is throw it down inside and we fouled the heck out of
(Larkai),” Norse head coach Dave Bezold said. “We played
very poor position defense in the first half, and that’s my
fault. I didn’t have us ready to play the right kind of defense
in the first half. I thought we’d be a little bit better that
second half, we made a few more adjustments. Again, any time you
get a bad angle, all they have to do is throw it up in the air and
all they have to do is catch it because of the size factor. On their
side of it, if we can make some shots, we can take care of that.”
Three NKU starters
fouled out, starting with Harrison Morton with 5:51 left in the
game. Anthony Teague followed with 3:44 left, and Vincent Humphrey
took a seat on the bench with 43.1 seconds left, and the Norse fell
to 16-4 overall, 10-3 in the Great Lakes Valley Conference.
NKU fell into
second place in the GLVC East Division standings due to Kentucky
Wesleyan’s 79-70 win over Saint Joseph’s Saturday. Kentucky
Wesleyan’s is now 11-2 in the GLVC, but the Norse own a win
over the Panthers and will visit Owensboro later this month.
make many shots, shooting only 39 percent (23-59) from the field,
including 32.1 percent in the first half.
in the game, we were not shooting that well,” Humphrey said.
“I think we shot only 32 percent, which should have been much
better. I think it was on our defensive end, really. We let them
get in the bonus early in the first half and they hit their free
throws when we sent them there. We dug ourselves a hole early and
never got out of it.”
which led the rest of the way after falling behind 2-0, improved
to 14-7, 8-5 in the GLVC. The Knights shot 46.5 percent from the
field, were 6-for-10 from 3-point range and hit 29 of 41 free throws.
the Norse on a furious comeback attempt, scoring 15 of his 18 points
in the second half. Humphrey helped the Norse close to within five,
67-62, with just over a minute remaining before fouling out.
Hawkins drives against Bellarmine.
looked up at the scoreboard and didn’t want to lose,”
Humphrey said. “Coach Bezold, with about 3:30 left, told us
not to quit. A lot of us have it in us and we don’t want to
quit. That is our mentality. I just tried to do things to bring
the game closer.”
took over from there and helped the Norse to within two points,
73-71, with his 3-pointer with five seconds remaining, but NKU could
get no closer. Hawkins finished with 12 points, all in the second
half. Morton scored only four points in just 15 minutes. Teague
scored 14 of his 16 points in the first half.
Teague kept us in the game in the first half,” Bezold said.
“He had to make tough shots, and if he doesn’t make
them, we could have been down 20 points and dug ourselves too big
of a hole that we wouldn’t have been able to get out of.”
scored 13 points for the Knights, while Jamie Jackson added 12 points
and 13 rebounds for Bellarmine.
Holy Cross High
School graduate Scott Bibbins scored 10 points for the Norse and
added a game-high six assists. Billy Finnell dished out five assists
for NKU. Bibbins, DeAaron Williams, and Travis Rasso each grabbed
four rebounds for the Norse.
NKU had just
returned to the NCAA Division II national rankings with three straight
wins. Those wins followed a loss at Missouri-St. Louis Jan. 24 -
the last time NKU appeared in the rankings.
line is this time of year, you can handle the pressure, step up,
and continue to win or you fold up,” Bezold said. “We’ve
got a bunch of seniors, and they are not going to let us fold. One
thing I don’t ever want to have happen is to be ranked again.
Every time we get ranked, we lay an egg. So that’s the bottom
line, no more rankings for us.”
NKU plays host
to Saint Joseph’s this Thursday at 7:45 p.m. in another key
GLVC East Division showdown. The Norse play their final regular-season
game in Regents Hall next Saturday against Indianapolis at a special
start time of 7 p.m.
ON TV SUNDAY NIGHT: Sunday night at 11:30 p.m., NKU head
coaches Nancy Winstel and Dave Bezold will be guests on Channel
9’s Sports of All Sorts. Be sure to tune in as Channel 9 sports
director John Popovich discusses the history of Regents Hall and
looks ahead to the opening of The Bank of Kentucky Center with Winstel