An eight-point deficit with one-minute left was too much to comeback from for the Milwaukee’s women’s basketball team as they fell to Northwestern 65-63 Sunday afternoon at the Klotsche Center. With this loss, the Panthers fall to 7-2 for the season.
Both teams were neck and neck throughout the game but Northwestern pulled ahead 63-55 with 1:07 left. Milwaukee did not give up as Jenny Lindner drained a three to cut the lead to five. After a defensive stop, Alexis Lindstrom hit her first 3-pointer to cut the deficit to two with just 17 seconds left in the game.
On the ensuing inbound, the Panthers got a steal and Lindner laid it in to tie it at 63 all with 12 seconds left. Northwestern’s Nia Coffey was able to draw a foul and make both free throws to regain the lead and the Panthers could not hit at the buzzer.
“We played them point to point,” said Milwaukee head coach Kyle Rechlicz. “It really was a great game for the fans to watch, it was a great game to coach and I’m sure it was a great game for our players. We just lost focus there for a little while…and had some mental lapses that you can’t have when you’re playing an opponent like Northwestern.”
Coming into this game, Northwestern was receiving top-25 poll votes as they only have one loss. AP All-American Honorable Mention, Coffey led Northwestern with scoring 17 points and pulling down nine rebounds.
Steph Kostowicz led the Panthers in scoring and rebounds with 21 points and 12 boards, making it her sixth double-double of the year. Lindner contributed with 14 points along with eight rebounds. Sierra Ford-Washington was also a force with 13 points and six assists.
Despite many players scoring in double digits, many mistakes were made.
“We’ve got to learn from our mistakes, just like we did from the Northern Illinois game and bounce back because we’ve got another game here this week,” said Rechlicz. “It’s a learning mentality for us, but I am proud of our team. We played against a very physically tough team, stayed in the game and had an opportunity to win at the end.”
Despite the loss, Milwaukee did show that they could go toe-to-toe with a Big Ten, borderline top-25 opponent. The Panthers will look to be back on the winning track as they host Chicago State, Wednesday night at 7 p.m. from the Klotsche Center.