The No. 4 ranked NKU women’s basketball team (22-2, 13-2 GLVC) clinched first place in the GLVC defeating Wisconsin Parkside (17-8, 13-3 GLVC) on Senior Night Wednesday 57-44.
Brandi Rayburn was the catalyst behind the Norse offense netting 16 of her 18 total points in the first half and pulled down seven boards for the game.
‘Brandi’s been a great addition to our team,’ said head coach Nancy Winstel, ‘she’s a big part to why we are where we are.’
With a 25-20 lead coming out of halftime, senior Jessie Slack made her presence felt scoring all of her 13 points in the second half making it her 29th consecutive game with double figures.’ Slack also had seven rebounds and shot sixty percent from behind the arc.
‘It feels good to make it through four years of basketball in college, that’s an accomplishment no matter where it is.’ I’ve had a good four years,” Slack said.
The Wisconsin-Parkside Rangers handed the lady Norse their second loss in three games back on Jan. 31 but were without their head coach (maternity leave) and their second leading scorer.’ Despite those things, Coach Winstel said she was just trying to pay attention to her team.
Parkside put their best foot forward against the Norse and cut the lead to within one point on two separate occasions during the second half.’ A 18-7 Norse run gave them a twelve point cushion at the 10 minute mark and were able to hold off the Rangers with their renowned defense, blocking nine shots and holding them to 32 percent field goal percentage.
‘We may have not played the greatest game tonight, but I think we toughed it out particularly in the second half.’
Amanda Gibson led all of Parkside with 17 points and teammates Brittany Beyer and Brittany Hogen both scored in double figures.
‘Parkside is really good.’ They’re young, physical, and aggressive,’ Winstel said.’ ‘They create problems for you because of their size.’
After the game, coach Winstel took a microphone and her four seniors to center court and gave a brief summary about her coaching experiences with them.
‘These ladies come to practice every day, they work hard every day, they go to class every day, and they do great in school,’ said Winstel about her seniors.’ In her closing remarks, after admitting that anyone who can put up with her for four years deserves a medal, she said, ‘As a team, we wish you ladies the best.’ You will always be part of NKU.’ We are a team, one body, one team.’