The Northern Kentucky Men’s Basketball team moved into a tie for first place in the Great Lakes Valley Conference East Division with two conference road-wins in Missouri over the weekend.
NKU (12-4, 5-2 GLVC) hit the road on Jan. 15 to defeat Rockhurst (10-6, 6-2 GLVC) and Drury (12-5, 5-2 GLVC) on Jan. 17 to share the first place honor with Bellarmine.
The Norse had success on both ends of the court in the first contest against Rockhurst, by containing the Hawks’ junior guard Aaron Hill, who averaged 20.6 points per game coming into the night, to just 12 points on 4-for-11 shooting from the field.
Senior forward DeAaron Williams contributed 17 points, freshman guard Jon Van Hoose scored a career high 15 points, and senior A’Daeron Duncan added 12 points for NKU.’ ‘
In the latter of the two matchups, the No. 18-ranked NKU prevailed against Drury in overtime 91-86.
The Norse were in a tight game throughout the first half at Weiser Gym, with NKU shooting only 39 percent in the first half to Drury’s 42 percent from the field.’ NKU also struggled from the behind three point line, hitting just 4-of-16, but were able to lead by a 34-33 margin at the half.
NKU started the second half with solid defensive pressure against the Panthers, who immediately turned the ball over.’ The Norse kept their lead until the 14:21 mark, when Drury tied the game at 41.’ Drury extended their lead over the Norse 61-48 with 6:31 remaining in the game, but the Norse chipped the lead down to 68-61 with 1:14 left. ‘ Maguire, the late game hero, hooped three 3-pointers in the last minute of the game, sending it into overtime. Senior forward Leslie Malone gave the Norse a lasting overtime lead with a lay up and a free throw.
Maguire finished with a career high 30 points, concluding a two-game performance which earned Maguire the honor of GLVC Men’s Basketball player of the week. The Norse will look to win their fourth straight, and defend their 7-0 home record, while playing host to GLVC rival Missouri S&T (7-8, 2-5 in GLVC) on Jan. 22 at the Bank of Kentucky Center. NKU will host another GLVC adversary, Quincy (10-6, 3-4 in GLVC), on Jan. 24 at the BOKC.