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Norse (4-0) meet No. 2 Drury (5-0) at 1 p.m. Saturday in battle of unbeaten teams

Nicole Chiodi averages 6.0 assists

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. - The Northern Kentucky University women’s basketball team will play host to NCAA Division II powerhouse Drury (Mo.) at 1 p.m. Saturday in Regents Hall.

Drury is ranked No. 2 nationally in the Division II poll. The Lady Panthers are 5-0 overall, 1-0 in the Great Lakes Valley Conference.

NKU is also unbeaten (4-0) after rallying past Rockhurst (Mo.), 70-57, Thursday night in the GLVC opener.
NKU has never played Drury in women’s basketball.

The NKU/Drury game will be broadcast live on the Internet at

BRANNEN TO THE RESCUE: Cassie Brannen picked a great time to record her first double-double as a college basketball player, and NKU is still unbeaten thanks in large part to the freshman’s performance Thursday night.

Brannen scored 14 points, grabbed 13 rebounds and finished with four steals off the bench as NKU rallied to defeat Rockhurst, 70-57. The freshman post player from Mount Notre Dame High School in Cincinnati scored nine points in the second half to rally the Norse from a 29-28 halftime deficit.

Brannen grabbed six offensive rebounds and continually drew fouls from the Rockhurst inside defenders with her aggressive play in the post. She finished 8-for-12 from the free-throw line, but she made five of her six charity tosses in the second half.

Brannen averages 7.3 points and 6.3 rebounds per game. She is also shooting 56.3 percent from the field.

TREY-FECTION: NKU used a 15-4 run midway through the second half to turn a 45-42 deficit into a 57-49 lead. The Norse drained a trio of 3-point shots during the spurt, including a trey from Betsey Clark at the 9:01 mark to give NKU a 55-49 lead.

Clark, a junior from McNicholas High School, also hit a 3-pointer in the first half and finished with six points.

CREAGER NEARS 500 CAREER POINTS: NKU junior guard Karyn Creager has 497 career points entering Saturday’s game. Creager averages 11.3 ppg and is shooting a GLVC-leading 93.3 percent from the free-throw line.

DEFENSE WINS: NKU is holding opponents to a GLVC-leading 32.9 percent shooting from the field. The Norse also have limited foes to just 21.6 percent from 3-point range.

CHIODI WITH THE ASSIST: NKU sophomore point guard Nicole Chiodi ranks second in the GLVC in assists at 6.0 apg. She also ranks second in the conference in assist-to-turnover ratio at 4.80.

ABOUT DRURY: The Lady Panthers improved to 5-0 Thursday night with a 75-72 win at Bellarmine in their first-ever GLVC game. During the past two seasons, Drury has the nation’s best overall record at 65-4, and the Lady Panthers posted a 29-2 mark last year.

Drury senior All-America forward Amanda Newton is the preseason pick as National Player of the Year by Division II Bulletin. Newton averages 19.4 ppg and 6.2 rebounds. She is also shooting 73.9 percent from the field.

Drury leads the GLVC in scoring at 86.0 ppg. The Lady Panthers are the preseason favorite to win the GLVC West.