UWM Women lose back to back games for first time this season

MILWAUKEE (MILWAUKEE ATHLETICS) – For the second straight night, the Milwaukee women's basketball team pushed late but couldn't overcome a double-digit deficit, falling to Northern Kentucky 68-61 at the Klotsche Center. The Panthers rattled off a 12-0 run in the fourth quarter but the Norse hit late free throws to seal the sweep.

"Honestly, I thought we played really hard," head coach Kyle Rechlicz stated. "It was nice to see us have a fourth quarter like that. I thought that was probably our best quarter, I just wished we could have turned it on a little sooner."

With 6:47 to play in the fourth, NKU's Carissa Garcia hit a triple to put the Norse up 15 but then something sparked with the Panthers. Milwaukee scored the next 12 points behind baskets from four different players to cut their deficit to three with just under two minutes to play.

The Panthers (15-3, 12-2 Horizon League) had a chance to pull closer on the following possession but turned the ball over on a shot clock violation, deflating the run.

NKU (6-6, 6-0 Horizon League) then responded with an and-one and a pair of free throws on their next two possessions to pull ahead 66-58. Sydney Staver knocked down her fifth triple of the night, but it was too little, too late for MKE as the Panthers dropped their second straight.

"A lot of credit goes to NKU," Rechlicz continued. "Their toughness is outstanding. I felt like we were a little less explosive in that first game against NKU but today, I felt like the energy was great."

It was the hot-shooting of the Norse that put the visitors in control early as they hit on four of their first five attempts from long range, finishing the first half 7-for-14 from three to account for 21 of their 32 points.

The Panthers kept it close behind eight points from Megan Walstad and six from Staver before halftime, but the three-point shooting was the difference in the first half.

In the third, Milwaukee closed the NKU lead to two before a 15-2 Norse run set up the double-digit deficit heading into the final period.

Walstad recorded her eighth double-double of the year with 13 points and 14 rebounds while adding three assists and four blocked shots.

Staver reached a new season-high of 17 points, finishing 5-for-9 from three-point range. Brandi Bisping also reached double digits as she recorded 14 points to go with six boards, three assists, and two steals.

Next up, the Panthers hit the road for a two-game series at Wright State beginning on Friday, February 5. Both games from Dayton, Ohio are set for 1:00 pm CT with live coverage links on MKEPanthers.com.

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