Feb. 27, 2003

NKU HOLDS OFF UW-PARKSIDE, 66-64

Norse improve to 21-5 overall, 15-4 in the GLVC

KENOSHA, Wis. - Brenden Stowers made two free throws with four seconds remaining in the game Thursday night as Northern Kentucky University held off the University of Wisconsin-Parkside, 66-64, at the DeSimone Gymnasium.

Stowers’ clutch free throws gave NKU a 66-61 lead and proved to be crucial. Wisconsin-Parkside’s Quincey Moman hit a three-pointer with one second left to cut the NKU advantage to 66-64, but the Norse ran out the clock on the inbound pass. NKU, ranked 13th nationally in the NCAA Division II poll, improved to 21-5 overall, 15-4 in the Great Lakes Valley Conference.

Wisconsin-Parkside held a 61-60 lead with a 1:25 remaining, but a driving layup by Mike Kelsey gave NKU a 62-61 advantage. Following a Wisconsin-Parkside miss, Quentin Smith extended NKU’s lead to 64-61 by rebounding Stowers’ layup attempt and scoring on a stickback.

Moman attempted a three-pointer with 10 seconds left, but the shot was altered by NKU’s Chris Seabrooks and fell short. Stowers rebounded the miss, was fouled and hit the clinching free throws.

Smith - who scored the winning basket against Wisconsin-Parkside during NKU’s 76-75 victory on Feb. 1 - led the Norse with 15 points and seven rebounds. Stowers and Seabrooks each added 14 points for NKU, which shot 48.2 percent from the field and won at the DeSimone Gymnasium for the first time since the 1999-2000 season.

During his last two games, Seabrooks has converted 13 of 15 shots (86.7 percent) from the field.

Mike Kelsey added nine points for NKU, but his streak of games scoring in double figures ended at 17. Jesse Rupe finished with eight points and five rebounds for the Norse.

Moman led Wisconsin-Parkside (13-13 overall, 8-11 GLVC) with 23 points, and Brian Maastricht added 15 points. The Rangers made 41.1 percent of their shots from the field.

NKU will conclude the regular season at 4 p.m. Saturday with a road game at 16th-ranked Lewis (Ill.) University. The winner of that game should be the No. 3 seed in the upcoming GLVC Tournament and meet sixth-seeded Wisconsin-Parkside in the first round on March 6.

The loser between NKU and Lewis will be the No. 4 seed and play fifth-seeded University of Indianapolis in the first round.

NKU is ranked No. 4 in the latest NCAA Division II Great Lakes Region poll, while Lewis is No. 5. The top eight teams in that poll will advance to the NCAA Division II Tournament in March.

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Chris Seabrooks