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Forum staff reports, Published February 01 2010

Women's basketball: ORU’s 20-2 run too much for Bison

TULSA, Okla. – Oral Roberts University closed out the second half against North Dakota State with a 20-2 run over the final five minutes, winning 81-75 in a women’s basketball Summit League matchup at the Mabee Center on Monday.

The Bison pulled out to a 42-30 halftime lead, led by Ashley Samuelson and Inger Hodgson. The two ended up with 19 points each, and Samuelson grabbed a career-high 13 rebounds.

But the Golden Eagles began to surge in the second half. Jaci Bigham scored 23 of her game-high 28 points after the half as the Bison defenses began to break down. Bigham made 5 of 11

3-point attempts.

“It’s upsetting that we played so well for 36 minutes, and then we got back on our heels,” said Bison head coach Carolyn DeHoff. “We just lacked aggression offensively, not getting good shots.”

With 5:32 remaining in the game, the Bison still held a 73-60 lead. But the bottom fell out and the Golden Eagles completed a one-sided comeback with their big 20-2 run.

The guard combination of Bigham and Kevi Luper (23 points) accounted for 51 of ORU’s 81 points. Luper shot 10-for-19 from the field.

DeHoff said turnovers late in the second half are what cost the Bison the win.

The Bison hit a season-high 9 of 20 3-pointers, and 6-foot-5 freshman center Janae Burich collected a career-high eight rebounds and had five blocked shots.

ORU (15-7; 9-2) extended its winning streak to six games and holds a half-game lead over the University of Missouri-Kansas City in The Summit.

The Bison (11-10; 6-5 Summit) next host Southern Utah (6-15; 4-6) at 2 p.m. Saturday. NDSU will be participating in the WBCA’s Pink Zone breast cancer awareness nationwide event.

N.D. STATE (11-10, 6-5): Samuelson 7-14 2-2 19, Burich 2-6 4-6 8, Birkel 3-9 2-3 10, Hodgson 6-12 4-6 19, Trecker 2-3 2-2 6, Degagne 0-1 0-0 0, Linz 1-3 0-0 3, Plucker 1-2 0-0 2, Zaruba 2-6 4-6 8. Totals 24-56 18-25 75.

ORAL ROBERTS (15-7, 9-2): Voelker 2-7 2-2 6, Buck 0-3 0-2 0, Adekunle 2-7 3-4 7, Luper 10-19 3-5 23, Bigham 7-16 9-9 28, Quintas 2-3 0-0 5, Turner 0-0 0-2 0, Pyle 5-9 1-3 12. Totals 28-64 18-27 81.

Half: NDSU 42, ORU 30. 3-point goals: NDSU 9-20 (Samuelson 3-6, Birkel 2-5, Hodgson 3-5, Linz 1-3, Plucker 0-1), ORU 7-19 (Voelker 0-3, Luper 0-2, Bigham 5-11, Quintas 1-1, Pyle 1-2). Total fouls: NDSU 22, ORU 21. Fouled out: Burich. Rebounds: NDSU 42 (Samuelson 13), ORU 35 (Voelker 7). Assists: NDSU 17 (Trecker 4), ORU 13 (Voelker, Bigham 4). Steals: NDSU 10 (Hodgson 3), ORU 18 (Voelker 5). Turnovers: NDSU 30, ORU 21.