Big Early Run Lifs St. Norbert in Rout of UW-Eau Claire

From Sports Information Director, November 24, 2009 | Women's Basketball
by Dan Lukes, dan.lukes@snc.edu, (920) 403-4077

DE PERE - A stellar defensive effort by St. Norbert College led the Green Knights to a big 75-49 rout of perennial national power UW-Eau Claire in a non-conference game at Schuldes Sports Center's Connie Tilley Court.

The Green Knights, who are 3-0 for the first time since the 1991-92 season, made 12 of their first 13 shots from the floor to take a 36-8 lead 11 1/2 minutes into the game. The loss was Eau Claire's worst loss to a non-conference opponent since a 94-55 loss at Lake Superior State on Dec. 13, 1986.

St. Norbert led 5-4 in the early going before going on a 23-0 run over a 5 1/2 minute stretch. Stefanie Bunday had seven points during the run, while Kristin Zimmerman hit a pair of 3-pointers. Denise Heuser's trey with 12:06 left in the first half put the Green Knights ahead 28-4.

Though pushing its lead to 36-8, St. Norbert went nine minutes in the first half without making a field goal. Heuser's 3-pointer put St. Norbert ahead 41-24 with 1:38 left before halftime, and her conversion layup gave St. Norbert a 43-24 lead at halftime.

St. Norbert opened the second half on a 12-4 run to take a 55-28 lead with 16 minutes left in the game. The Blugolds would get no closer than 21 points the rest of the way.

Heuser was the only St. Norbert player to score in double figures, netting 17 points. Bunday had nine points, while Jamie Kuhl, Emily Otzelberger and Erin Baganz had eight points apiece. The Green Knights made 47.1 percent (24-for-51) of their field goals, and canned an impressive 6 of 12 3-pointers and 21 of 26 free throws. St. Norbert had just 13 turnovers.

Eau Claire (0-2) was harried into 27 turnovers by St. Norbert's defensive pressure, which has held opponents to 44 points per game through three games this season. Hannah Mesick led Eau Claire with 24 points and nine rebounds. The Blugolds shot 42.5 percent (17-for-40) from the floor.

St. Norbert has won five of its last six games against Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference foes.