TAHLEQUAH, Okla. — Sarah Green scored 14 points to lead four players in double figures as No. 24 Northeastern State pounded 15th-ranked Northwest Missouri State 69-42 in the season opener for both schools on Tuesday night at Dobbins Field House.
The RiverHawks never trailed and were relentless defensively, forcing 15 Bearcat turnovers in the first half.
Taylor Lewis added 12 points, including nine in the second half, while Cristy Nitz had 10 and Jasmine Wright contributed 10 points to go along with her eight rebounds.
Northeastern State shot a blistering 51 percent from the field while its defense limited the Bearcats to just 14-of-41 (34.1 percent) on the night. Candance Boeh led Northwest Missouri State with nine points while Tara Roach and Ashley Thayer scored eight apiece.
Northeastern State opened up an 11 point cushion, 17-6, just 5:58 into the contest and the Bearcats got no closer than six, 21-15, the rest of the way. The RiverHawks, on the strength of Green’s 5-for-5 performance from the field in the frame, led 34-16 at halftime.
The lead quickly ballooned to 22 points just six minutes into the second stanza as Lewis caught fire and scored five of her points during the stretch. Fontana Tate gave Northeastern State its largest lead of the night, 69-39, with a trey with only a minute showing.
Northwest Missouri State, which won the South Central Regional last March in Tahlequah, ended the night with 25 turnovers and was just 11-of-23 from the charity stripe.