Southern Utah cruises past NAU women

CEDAR CITY, Utah — Southern Utah built an early double-digit lead early and cruised to a 93-59 victory over the Northern Arizona women’€™s basketball team on Monday night in Cedar City. The Lumberjacks fell to 3-9 in conference play and 6-15 overall with the loss.

"€œWe have nice pieces to our puzzle physically,"€ said head coach Sue Darling. "€œWe can talk about our offensive ability and defensive ability, but we have to find some guts, heart and courage. We didn’€™t pack that tonight."€

Southern Utah went on a 9-0 run to take an 18-6 lead with 12:45 left in the first half, then stretched the lead to 45-24 by halftime.

The Lumberjacks shot 43.8 percent in the second half but were never able to gather enough momentum to cut into the Thunderbirds’€™ advantage significantly.

Southern Utah (14-7, 8-4) shot 64.6 percent from the field and limited NAU to 38.6 percent. The Thunderbirds also controlled the glass, outrebounding the Lumberjacks 38-23, and had five players score at least 12 points.

The Lumberjacks missed all 17 of their shots from 3-point range.

Freshman Brittani Lusain led the Lumberjacks with 18 points, five assists and four steals. Freshman Catelyn Preston made her first start since Jan. 23 and recorded 10 points and five assists.

NAU returns home for two games this week, first hosting Portland State for Field Trip Day in the Skydome. Tipoff will be at noon on Thursday.