GREEN BAY, Wisconsin — Jen Wellnitz had just four points for Green Bay Saturday, but her putback with 0.6 seconds remaining in double overtime gave the Phoenix an 80-78 victory over Northern Kentucky.
It was heartbreaking for the Norse (19-13), considering they had controlled a game against the 18-time league champions on their home court in the Horizon League semifinals.
However, the Norse found itself behind by five points with 41 seconds remaining in regulation. This turned out to be Green Bay’s largest lead of the game.
Kasey Uetrecht drained a three with 32 seconds remaining to pull the Norse within two, 55-53. After a Tesha Buck free throw, Molly Glick cut the NKU deficit to one with a layup with 16 seconds left.
Allie LeClaire expanded the Phoenix lead back to three with a pair of free throws with 15 seconds left.
Shar’Rae Davis tied the game with seven seconds left with a three from the left corner. Green Bay had two chances to win in the final moments of regulation but missed. The two teams headed to overtime tied at 58.
NKU controlled much of the first overtime. When Uetrecht scored with 55 seconds left, the Norse led 67-63.
Following a Green Bay timeout, Mehryn Kraker drained a three to pull Green Bay within one with 36 seconds left. Uetrecht knocked down a pair of free throws to give NKU a 69-66 lead.
Kraker would score again with 20 seconds left. Green Bay trailed 69-68. Uetrecht again buried a pair of free throws, giving NKU a 71-68 lead with 18 seconds left.
This time, it was Green Bay with a three in the final seconds. Kaili Lukan knocked down the triple to tie the game at 71. However, Allie LeClaire made a huge mistake by fouling Rianna Gayheart on the ensuing inbounds pass.
Fortunately for LeClaire, Gayheart missed both free throws. Green Bay pushed it quickly but threw it away to Uetrecht. A long-range heave by Uetrecht would miss, and the game went to double overtime.
Once again, NKU controlled most of the overtime. Gayheart knocked down a three with 1:25 left to give NKU a 78-74 lead. But a basket by Jessica Lindstrom and free throws by Tesha Buck tied the game at 78 with 47 seconds left.
NKU worked the ball inside but turned it over with 18 seconds remaining. After a miss by Lukan, Wellnitz was all alone under the basket and put the shot back in with 0.6 remaining.
One final chance remained for NKU, but when Molly Glick’s three was off the mark, Green Bay had survived.
For the third straight game, Uetrecht let the Norse in scoring. She had 20 points, 11 rebounds and 5 assists. Gayheart added 16 points and 6 assists.
For Green Bay (27-4), Kraker led the way with 32 points. Lindstrom added 14 points and 13 rebounds.
Now the waiting begins for NKU. While ineligible for the NCAA tournament, the Norse would be eligible for either the Women’s National Basketball Invitational or the Women’s Basketball Invitational. Bids will be announced Monday night after the NCAA tournament field is revealed.
Saturday, March 12, 2016
@ Kress Events Center, Green Bay, Wisconsin
Green Bay 80, Northern Kentucky 78 2 OT
N — 14 – 11 – 12 – 21 – 13 – 7 — 78G — 7 – 7 – 21 – 23 – 13 – 9 — 80
(78) NORTHERN KENTUCKY (fg-3fg-ft-tp) Lyttle 1-0-1-3, Uetrecht 5-4-6-20, Glick 3-0-0-6, Gayheart 5-4-2-16, Ch. Roush 4-2-3-13, Davis 3-1-2-9, Terry 1-0-0-2, Franson 2-0-5-9. TOTALS 24-11-19-78.
(80) GREEN BAY (fg-3fg-ft-tp) Kraker 13-4-2-32, Lindstrom 5-2-2-14, Weitzer 2-0-1-5, Lukan 1-1-1-4, LeClaire 5-1-2-13, Wellnitz 2-0-0-4, Buck 0-0-4-4, Terry 1-0-2-4. TOTALS 29-8-14-80.
FIELD GOALS: N 24/52 (Uetrecht 5/11, Gayheart 5/9, Ch. Roush 4/9, Glick 3/7, Davis 3/5); G 29/72 (Kraker 13/23, Lindstrom 5/12, LeClaire 5/13)
3 POINT FIELD GOALS: N 11/26 (Uetrecht 4/7, Gayheart 4/6); G 8/31 (Kraker 4/10, Lindstrom 2/5)
FREE THROWS: N 19/27 (Uetrecht 6/8, Franson 5/5); G 14/21 (Buck 4/6)
REBOUNDS: N 35 (Uetrecht 11, Davis 6, Glick 4, Ch. Roush 4); G 43 (Lindstrom 13, Lukan 7, Kraker 6)
ASSISTS: N 15 (Gayheart 6, Uetrecht 5); G 14 (Kraker 6)
STEALS: N 7; g 8 (Lukan 3)
BLOCKED SHOTS: N 2; G 6 (Weitzer 2)
TURNOVERS: N 16; G 14