ST. CHARLES, Mo. – The University of Northern Iowa
women's basketball team fell to the Wichita State Shockers in overtime of the
semi-final round of the MVC Tournament, 75-71. The Panthers were led by seniors
Jacqui Kalin and Amber Kirschbaum.
Kalin finished with 26 points and six assists while Kirschbaum finished with a double-double of 19 points and 10 rebounds.
The Panthers went into the first media timeout with a 5-4 lead over the Shockers after Wichita State held a 4-0 lead with 17:38 left in the first half. Brooke Brown hit UNI's first field goal of the game, draining a three-pointer. Kirschbaum was then able to convert on her signature turnaround jump shot to give UNI the lead.
UNI held a 9-8 lead with 11:54 on the clock, with Kirschbaum
scoring six of the Panthers' nine points. Wichita State took their second lead
of the game with 11:12 left in the half when Chynna Turner ran in for a layup,
but Kalin and Hannah Schonhardt got the lead back, hitting consecutive
three-pointers to make the score 15-10.
Jess McDowell gave UNI a 10-point lead with 3:12 left in the
first half off a 17-footer, making the score 27-17. Wichita State's Alex Harden
hit a jump shot on the next play, but McDowell struck again, knocking down a big
three-pointer to give UNI a 30-19 lead.
The Panthers went into halftime with a 32-21 lead over the
Shockers. UNI shot 48 percent in the first half, led by Kirschbaum who finished
4-5 from the field for 10 points.
Wichita State went on a 9-1 run to open the second half,
cutting the UNI lead to three-points with 17:16 on the clock. Kalin hit the
Panthers first field goal of the second half with 17:08 left in the half,
hitting her second three-pointer of the game to make the score 36-30.
The Shockers took a three-point lead with 14:15 on the clock
off a jump shot from Michelle Price. Kalin drove strong through the lane on the
next offensive play for the Panthers, cutting the Shocker lead to one-point,
making the score 39-38. Stephanie Davison gave the lead back to UNI when she hit
a long jumper from the corner to give UNI a 40-39 lead.
Wichita State went on a 7-0 run to take a six-point lead on
the Panthers with less than 10 minutes left in the game, but Schonhardt was able
to pull up for a quick jumper in the lane to cut the run off and make the score
46-42. On the next two offensive drives, Kalin and Brown knocked down huge
three-pointers, followed by two free throws from Kalin to give UNI a 50-49 lead
with 5:43 on the clock.
With four different lead changes under the five minute mark
in the game, the Panthers took the lead again with 2:34 on the clock when Kalin
drove through the lane for a layup to make the score 58-57.
Wichita State regained the lead with 1:03 left in the game when
Alex Harden converted on a jump shot, followed by two free throws from Jessica
Diamond to make the score 63-60.
Kalin drove through the lane again with 13 seconds left in
the game to cut the Wichita State lead to one-point, making the score 63-62.
Wichita State held a three-point lead after Alex Harden hit two free throws, but
the MVC Player of the Year drained a deep three-pointer to send the game into
overtime and make the score 65-65.
Wichita State opened overtime on a 9-2 run sparked by a
three-pointer by Diamond, giving the Shockers a 74-67 lead with 1:50 left in the
period. UNI cut the Shocker lead to three points with 49 seconds left in the
period off two free throws from Brown, but after a failed last attempt by the
Panthers, UNI fell to Wichita State 75-71.