(MARYVILLE, Mo.) Ariel Easton made a layup with 5:09 left to give Northwest a two point lead over the eighth-ranked Central Missouri Jennies, but the upset bid fell short as the Bearcats hit one field goal the rest of the way. Northwest dropped to 5-11 overall, 2-7 MIAA, with the 67-62 loss.
Central Missouri held an advantage on the glass out-rebounding Northwest by seven, including 16 offensive boards resulting in 18 second chance points.
Easton led the Bearcats with 22 points. Annie Mathews added 14 and Ashleigh Nelson had 11 points.
Northwest is now tied with Missouri Western for 12th in the MIAA standings with ten games remaining, including two with the Griffons.
Central Missouri men 68, Northwest 80
For the first time in Ben McCollum's five seasons as head coach in Maryville, Northwest Missouri State beat Central Missouri 80-68. The Bearcats led by as many as 19 points in the first half, and hung on in the final 20 minutes to run their win streak to five games. Prior to the win inside Bearcat Arena Saturday, McCollum's teams were 0-8 against the Mules, and the overall losing streak against UCM had reached nine in a row.
Northwest's hot shooting continued as they hit 53-percent of their shots, and made 50-percent of their three-pointers for the second consecutive game. Five Northwest players scored in double-digits. Senior DeShaun Cooper led the 'Cats with 16 points, five assists and five rebounds. Dillon Starzl scored 15 points and pulled down six rebounds.
Northwest sits at 13-5 overall, 8-1 MIAA. The Bearcats are one half game ahead of Missouri Southern for the lead in the conference standings. The 'Cats and Lions meet Wednesday in Maryville.