PNW Falls to Trinity Christian; Four-Way Tie for First in CCAC South The Purdue University Northwest men’s basketball team put together a valiant second-half effort, but it wasn’t enough in a 87-74 loss to visiting Trinity Christian College Wednesday night at the James B. Dworkin Center.
The Pride (13-15, 11-9 Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference) now find themselves in a four-way tie for first place in the CCAC South Division, as St. Francis (11-9) fell to Olivet Nazarene (11-9) Wednesday and Calumet St. Joseph (11-9) fell to Holy Cross. Saturday’s final regular-season game at Governors State will be pivotal as the Pride try to capture the top spot, which would mean an automatic bid to the NAIA Division II National Tournament.
PNW junior post Torrance Johnson (Chicago Heights, Ill./Chicago Hope Academy) led the Pride with 20 points on 7-of-9 shooting , sophomore Chandler Spring (Covington, Ind./Covington) added 16 points and Tyree Coe (Fishers, Ind./Fishers) had 15 points. Senior Mike Williams (Gary, Ind./Lew Wallace) chipped in 11 points, five boards and four assists to round out Pride players in double-figures.
Purdue Northwest trailed by 15, 39-24, after a rough first half saw the squad shoot just 30 percent (9-of-30) in the first 20 minutes. PNW would begin its second half run at the 13-minute mark, as TCC (12-16, 7-13) led by 50-36, on a Ben Brinks’ layup. Two Williams free-throws kickstarted what would be a 18-7 run over the next three-and-a-half minutes to cut the Trolls’ lead to just 3, 53-50.
Spring hit back-to-back triples during that span to aid the run.
But Trinity Christian would withstand the charge, as Jordan Perry would answer with two layups of his own to push the advantage back to seven, 57-50, with 9:16 left. Trinity would lead by as many as 14 (68-54) with 5:32 left before one final PNW run — with the help of a Caleb Brannon (Lebanon, Ind./Lebanon) triple and two Johnson buckets — that cut that deficit to just four, 70-66, with 2:55 left.
But the Trolls would end the game on a 17-8 run to seal the win.
PNW finished the game 39.4 percent (26-of-66) from the floor compared to 48.1 percent (25-of-52) for TCC, who drained 9-of-21 (42.9 percent) from downtown compared to 5-of-27 (18.5 percent) for the Pride. PNW forced the Trolls into a game-high 20 turnovers, scoring 23 points off those miscues, while the Pride committed just 12 giveaways.
TCC never trailed in the game after opening the contest on a 20-5 run.
Five players scored in double-figures for the Trolls, led by Perry’s 27 points and 12 rebounds.
PNW returns to action Saturday with a pivotal matchup in University Park, Ill., at Governors State. Tip-off is set for 3 p.m. CT.
Purdue Northwest Holds Off Trinity Christian, 76-68 Despite a second-half comeback from visiting Trinity Christian College, the No. 15 Purdue University Northwest women’s basketball team withstood the charge to capture its 22nd win of the year in Wednesday’s 76-68 league victory.
Senior Cassidy Deno (Otterbein, Ind./Benton Central) led the Pride (22-7, 17-3 Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference) with 22 points and eight rebounds and classmate Katie Wampler (Scottsburg, Ind./Scottsburg) added 20 points, six boards and four steals.
PNW senior Darien Thompson (Anderson, Ind./Anderson) chipped in 15 points and juniors Ellie Michalski (Mukwonago, Wis./Mukwonago) and Jessica Kiser (Noblesville, Ind./Noblesville) did the job on the boards, each contributing eight points and 10 and 11 rebounds, respectively.
The Pride led after one quarter, 24-13, and then at the break, 50-32, behind 54.8 percent shooting from the field and 46.2 percent (6-of-13) from behind the arc. Wampler had 17 of her 20 in the first half, shooting a perfect 5-for-5 from the field, and Thompson scored all 15 of her points in the first 20 minutes to help the Pride take a big lead heading into the third quarter.
But the Trolls (9-20, 8-12) didn’t go away, outscoring PNW 20-5 in the third frame to head into the final 10 minutes down just 3, 55-52. PNW, though, held strong.
TCC’s Jessica Bianchi brought Trinity Christian within two, 58-56, with 6:56 to go, but Deno would answer by getting fouled on a 3-point attempt and draining all three free throws to push the lead back to five.
TCC would get within two one last time, 63-61, on a Bethany Jansma layup, but Deno would answer the call once again with a jumper in the lane to give PNW a four-point advantage, 65-61.
PNW would close the game out at the charity stripe, going 9-of-10 --6-of-6 by Deno -- in the final 1:26 to finish the game.
The Pride shot 46.0 percent (23-of-50) from the field for the game compared to 44.6 percent (29-of-65) for the Trolls, and PNW dominated the boards, 42-22, to lead to a 17-4 advantage in second-chance points. But the Trolls took advantage of 31 PNW turnovers, scoring 37 points off those miscues.
Jansma led the Trolls with 23 points and Lauren Stokes added 16 in the loss.
Purdue Northwest returns to action Saturday with a road contest at Governors State to close out the regular season. The CCAC Tournament quarterfinals begin Wednesday, Feb. 22.
Purdue Northwest Athletics Releases Fall 2016 Academic Report The Purdue University Northwest Athletic Department is proud to announce a stellar 3.17 departmental semester grade point average with the recent release of the Fall 2016 academic report.
Included in the group of nearly 200 Pride student-athletes included 16 with a perfect 4.0 GPA and 68.3 percent of PNW student-athletes carried a 3.0 or higher.
“The constant focus for our athletic programs has always been students first, athletes second,” PNW Athletic Director Rick Costello said. “We are so proud of our Pride student athletes for continuing to strive for a balance of academics and athletics as move forward into NCAA Division II membership.”
The PNW women’s basketball team, which currently stands as the 15th-ranked team in NAIA Division II with a 21-7 overall record, led the way with a stellar 3.73 team grade point average, with women’s tennis (3.53), women’s golf (3.50) and women’s volleyball (3.44) not far behind.
In total, 11 of PNW’s 13 varsity teams carried at least a 3.0 average grade point average.
“Our student-athletes are constantly striving to be better in the classroom, and the results from the last semester show that,” said Jen Madgiak, Associate Athletic Director for Academic Services. “As a staff, our goal is make our student-athletes into successful members of society and we’re very proud of the progress we’ve made in the classroom.”
Other academic accolades for PNW over the fall semester to present include:
Seven fall PNW student-athletes — Abigail Bondi (Women’s Cross Country); Sergio Reyes (Men’s Soccer); Gabrielle Martin (Volleyball); Christina Kotas (Women’s Soccer); Tiffani Kotas (Women’s Soccer); Murilo Cunha (Men’s Soccer); and Shyla Huppenthal (Women’s Cross Country) — were named Daktronics Scholar-Athletes.