The Western Illinois women had their hands full in Saturday's game against the North Dakota Hawks.
The Leathernecks had a busy travel week, returning back to Macomb on Friday after a long bus ride to South Dakota. The Fighting Hawks beat Western in North Dakota a few weeks ago.
But on Saturday, the Leatherneck women came up on top with a score of 91-74. The Fighting Hawks were hot starting off both halves in the game, but the Leathernecks had a response for each time. As a result, giving the Leathernecks a huge win that moved WIU into third place in the Summit League. Western lead by as much as 20 points in the first half.
WIU’s Junior Grace Gilmore had a fantastic night with 17 points and four rebounds. Sophomore Danni Nichols leads the way for Western with 19 points. Freshman Carla Flores added 10 points and Sophomore Sam Pryor came off the bench to add 12 more points.
North Dakota would rally up a bunch of runs to bring the game within single digits. But in return, the Leatherneck women responded each time to stretch the lead as much as possible. Western went to the free-throw line 36 times on Saturday and knocked down 28, sending the Fighting Hawks home with a loss.
Whenever it appeared WIU was hanging on for dear life and fighting tired leads, Western would string together yet another run to keep North Dakota at a safe distance in the second half. The Leathernecks are off until Thursday when they host Omaha at home for the regular-season finale.