Flames’ streak hits 5 as they head home for Dec. 20 match
Despite a cold shooting night, UIC women’s basketball eased past Denver on a chilly evening Dec. 18 inside Magness Arena.
The 7-1 Flames ran their winning streak to five games and improved to 5-1 on the road as the non-conference trip comes to an end. They return home Dec. 20 vs. Toledo at 3 p.m. at the UIC Pavilion. UIC students are free with i-card; general admission tickets are $8. For more information, call the UIC ticket office at 312-413-UIC1.
Ruvanna Campbell (15 points, 17 rebounds) and Kendyl Nunn (10 points, 16 rebounds) each recorded a double-double to keep 2-9 Denver at bay. The 16-rebound performance for Nunn was one shy of her career best.
Melita Emanuel-Carr poured in 11 points.
The game featured six ties and five lead changes. UIC started off lukewarm, shooting 6-17 (35.3 percent), and went cold quickly despite a 14-8 lead after the first period. UIC ended the second period shooting just 3-15 and saw their lead disappear to a 24-24 tie at halftime.
“I thought we handled the altitude well enough,” said head coach Regina Miller. “We didn’t play as up tempo as we like because we wanted to maximize our possessions.”
In the third period, the Flames scored the first two baskets to take a 28-24 lead but the Pioneers made an 8-2 run to take a 32-30 lead. Taylor Toney scored her first collegiate basket on a driving layup that tied the game at 32-32 with 2:48 remaining, but Denver made a late charge to end the period with a 37-34 lead.
The Flames turned up the heat on defense in the fourth period, limiting Denver to nine points. Cate Soane (five points) scored on a go-ahead layup with 5:40 left to give UIC a 40-39 lead. Denver cut the lead to 46-44 with 1:37 remaining before Melissa Grossfeld nailed a three pointer to seal the win.
It was the fourth time in the last five games that UIC needed a fourth-period comeback to pull out the victory. The 46 points allowed were the lowest this season.
“I was pleased we were able to hang in there and make plays down the stretch and pull out this win,” Miller said.
“Lately we have been in some tight games and we have learned how to win. Being on the road for six of the first eight games and winning five out of six is a plus for us heading into conference play.
“Now we get to head home for a three-game stretch and get the support from our fans,” she said.