Kansas Women's Basketball Advances to the Third Round of Women's NIT
March 23, 2009
LAWRENCE, Kan. –
For the third straight season, the Kansas women’s basketball team won its opening game in the Women’s NIT, defeating the Creighton Bluejays, 79-64 in Allen Fieldhouse Monday night.
The victory improved Kansas to 19-13 while Creighton, led by Kelsey Woodard’s 15 points, finished its season at 22-12.
With just over seven minutes left in the game, Creighton cut the Kansas lead to nine on a pair of free throws by Megan Neuvirth. Freshman Aishah Sutherland responded with a three-point play to put the Jayhawks back up by 12. Sutherland finished the game with a career-high 15 points and 12 rebounds, marking the first double-double of her career.
The Bluejays refused to go quietly, however, cutting the lead to single-digits multiple times in the last five minutes before KU went up 75-64 on an Ivana Catic jumper with 2:35 remaining.
Kansas’ Sade Morris and Danielle McCray combined for more first-half points than the entire Creighton team. Behind their 22 points, the Jayhawks took a 38-21 advantage into the locker room. McCray and Sutherland led the Jayhawks with eight rebounds apiece.
Despite getting off to a slow start – the Jayhawks didn’t make their first basket until the 15:17 mark – Kansas took its first lead, 13-12, on a Morris lay-up nine minutes into the half. Morris’ basket prompted an 11-4 run and KU never relinquished the lead again.
For the second time in the last three games, McCray and Morris both scored more than 20 points. McCray tallied 25 points and Morris chipped in 21 points on 7-of-12 shooting. McCray also grabbed 11 boards to notch her eighth double-double of the season. Kansas outscored Creighton in every category but second chance points and owned a 42-36 rebounding advantage over the Bluejays.
Kansas continues play in the third round of the Women’s NIT when it hosts Arkansas Thursday night at Allen Fieldhouse. Game time is set for 7 p.m.