The only drama left at the end of NKU’s 81-60 rout of Detroit Thursday night was whether Courtney and Christine Roush would combine to score more points than the Titans.
Both Roushes were off the floor for the final 3:46, which allowed Detroit to finish ahead, but not by much.
Courtney Roush’s 29 points is a career-high. It matches her sister’s career high and equals the Division I high for a Norse individual.
“After the last couple games, I realized that if someone else isn’t going to score, I need to be the boss of the ball,” Courtney Roush said. “When I see people open, I’m definitely going to pass it to them. I’m not going to be a ball-hog.
“As you can see, I can make a pretty good shot.”
Christine Roush finished with 24. She and her teammates found her sister open, and Courtney knocked down the shots.
“She’s getting opportunities and she’s getting open so we’re passing it to her since she keeps scoring back-to-back,” Christine Roush said. “So why not?”
Christine scored 20 points in the first half. Once the defense keyed on her, Courtney got the open shots. She scored 15 of her 29 in the second half.
Unselfish play is something the Roushes and their teammates have focused on all season.
“Some players have their nights, and we look for everyone,” Christine Roush said. “Everyone has opportunities to make shots and score around the rim and make the three.”
“Shoutout to Shar’Rae Davis, she had really good passes down low to us,” Courtney Roush said. “She had a killer pass to Sarah Kinch. She brought a lot of energy.”
As to whether it is a scoring competition between the sisters, Christine had an opinion.
“She thinks it’s a competition,” Christine said with a smile on her face. “I’m really just happy for her to outscore me. I think that’s awesome.”
The sisters’ combined success has led to a social media hashtag: #Roushed.
“In high school, we didn’t have a hashtag, but we had a chant, ‘You just got Roushed’,” Christine Roush said. “Now it’s coming out in college. It’s pretty awesome.”
Any drama in the outcome of the game ended after NKU outscored Detroit 25-8 in the second quarter.
“Our kids were able to make some adjustments in how we were guarding them,” NKU head coach Dawn Plitzuweit said. “They did a great job defensively and that was really the difference.”
NKU opened up its advantage by getting the ball to players inside the paint, especially the Roushes and Rebecca Lyttle, who finished with 11 points and 11 rebounds.
“We really tried to go inside, tried to establish ourselves around the rim,” Plitzuweit said. “In the first half, I thought we did a much better job because our spacing was better.”
Plitzuweit, who is on Twitter @CoachDawnP, has also jumped on the hashtag bandwagon.
“Officially Roushed – that’s the new hashtag,” Plitzuweit said. “Both kids played very, very well. Both made good decisions around the rim. Christine came out hunting shots and made some shots early.
“Courtney came in and played very hard and very well. She made some things happen defensively. You’re going to look at the stat sheet and see all the things she did offensively. But also, she was a very solid defender for us.”
The win is the fifth in six games for the Norse. NKU is now a half-game behind Detroit for third place in the Horizon League.
“Our players are very locked in,” Plitzuweit said. “You can see during the course of practice that they’re very locked in on what needs to change and how we need to get better defensively. Their focus defensively has been very, very good and that’s helped us.”
NKU returns to action 1 p.m. Sunday against Oakland. The game will be broadcast on ESPN3.
Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016
@ BB&T Arena, Highland Heights, Kentucky
Northern Kentucky 81, Detroit 60
D — 22 – 8 – 16 – 14 — 60N — 25 – 25 – 18 – 13 — 81
(60) DETROIT (fg-3fg-ft-tp) H. Ristowski 2-2-0-6, L. Ristowski 4-3-2-13, Reynolds 7-0-4-18, Taylor 1-0-0-2, Jackson 3-1-2-9, Cohen 3-0-2-8, Malone 2-0-0-4. TOTALS 22-6-10-60.
(81) NORTHERN KENTUCKY (fg-3fg-ft-tp) Lyttle 5-0-1-11, Ch. Roush 8-4-4-24, Uetrecht 1-0-2-4, Glick 1-1-0-3, Davis 1-1-0-3, Co. Roush 11-1-6-29, Kinch 1-0-1-3, Franson 1-0-2-4. TOTALS 29-7-16-81.
FIELD GOALS: D 22/58 (Reynolds 7/17, L. Ristowski 4/6); N 29/56 (Co. Roush 11/18, Ch. Roush 8/15, Lyttle 5/9)
3 POINT FIELD GOALS: D 6/19 (L. Ristowski 3/5); N 7/18 (Ch. Roush 4/7)
FREE THROWS: D 10/12 (Reynolds 4/4); N 16/18 (Co. Roush 6/6, Ch. Roush 4/4)
REBOUNDS: D 29 (Reynolds 6, Cohen 5, H. Ristowski 4); N 37 (Lyttle 11, Co. Roush 7, Uetrecht 5)
ASSISTS: D 7 (Reynolds 4); N 14 (Davis 4)
STEALS: D 9 (H. Ristowski 3, Reynolds 3); N 7 (Ch. Roush 3)
BLOCKED SHOTS: D 1; N 5 (Lyttle 4)
TURNOVERS: D 16; N 18