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Weekly Sports Digest: February 20-26

Seniors Britt Lauck (left), Amauria Campbell (center) and Angela Tesny (right) led the Polar Bears as they won the OAC Tournament title on Saturday. (photo/ ONU Sports Information)

At the conclusion of every week, the Northern Review will recap what happened that week in the world of Ohio Northern athletics, and will also preview the week ahead. Here are this week’s headlines:

#5 Women’s basketball wins OAC Tournament, earns automatic NCAA bid

The women’s basketball team entered last week’s OAC Tournament as the one-seed, going an unprecedented 25-0 in the regular season and earning a double-bye in the tournament. They hosted four-seed Marietta in the semi-finals on Thursday night, winning a nailbiter, 61-60. Junior center Amy Bullimore swatted two Marietta shots with just seconds remaining to clinch the victory for the Polar Bears. Bullimore recorded 14 points, nine rebounds and five blocks in the game.

On Saturday, Northern hosted three-seed Wilmington in the OAC Tournament championship. The Bears took a 13-point halftime lead, although that margin dwindled to four with just under three minutes to play. Solid defense and clutch free throws down the stretch propelled Northern to a 70-55 win, as they claimed their second OAC Tournament title in five years and cut down the nets at King Horn for the second time in one week.

Junior guard Courtney Cramer scored a career-high 18 points in Saturday’s championship, as she earned Tournament MVP and All-Tournament team honors. Bullimore was also named to the All-Tournament team.

With the OAC regular season and tournament titles in hand, Northern earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament and maintained their undefeated record, improving to 27-0. On Monday, the NCAA announced that King Horn would be a host site for the opening weekend of the national tournament for the first time in school history. Northern will face Lakeland (Wis.) in round one of the NCAA Tournament on Friday night.


Richards claims OAC-record three titles in conference meet

Junior Emily Richards won the 1,000-meter, one-mile and the 800-meter races all on the final day of the OAC Championship meet last weekend, making her the first female athlete in OAC history to win all three events in one meet.

Richards set the conference record in the 1,000-meter (finishing in 2:57.20) and one-mile (finishing in 4:56.58) races, and was named the OAC Female Distance Athlete of the Year.

Sophomore Maddy Reed (right) was given OAC Female Field Athlete of the Year honors last weekend as well. Reed won the pole vault competition on day one of the meet, breaking her own school record and the OAC record with a vault of 13’ 1.5”.

Senior Rebecca Olashuk broke an eight-year old school record in the weight throw, with a toss of 53’ 5.00.” The sixth-ranked Northern women’s indoor track & field team finished second in the meet, nine points behind champion Otterbein.

The men’s indoor team also finished second last weekend, with Mount Union capturing first. Junior Matt Molinaro claimed two OAC titles in the meet, winning the one-mile race and the 800-meter dash. Senior Lucas Shumate won the conference title in the weight throw, breaking his own previous school record with a throw of 60’ 1.25.”

On Saturday, senior Kase Schalois and sophomore Ian McVey (left) finished first and second respectively in the 3,000-meter race, as Schalois beat McVey by 19-hundredths of a second. Northern’s distance medley relay team, consisting of senior Andrew Harden, juniors Matt Molinaro and Alec Lunney, and sophomore Corey Briggs placed first in the meet with a time of 10:26.26.



What to watch for this week:

#5 Women’s basketball to host opening round of tournament

The Polar Bears will host Lakeland (Wis.) on Friday night in the first round of the NCAA Tournament -- the game is slated to start at 7:30 p.m., or 30 minutes after the first game of the night, which is Trine vs. Illinois Wesleyan.

For more information on this weekend’s NCAA Tournament action at King Horn, click here.


Baseball, softball open seasons next week in Florida

The Northern baseball team will travel to Auburndale, Fla. to begin their season on Saturday afternoon when they face Grove City (Pa.). The Polar Bears will play ten games in Florida over Spring Break, concluding their trip next Saturday afternoon in Winter Haven, Fla. ONU went 4-4 in their Florida trip last spring, and finished the season with a 21-16 record.

Meanwhile, the Northern softball team will also head to Florida for Spring Break, beginning their season on Sunday afternoon against Mitchell (Conn.) in Clermont, Fla. The Bears will play 12 games next week, facing twelve different opponents. Northern went 9-5 in Florida last spring, finishing the season 24-19 overall.


Lacrosse teams travel East, South for Spring Break

The Northern men’s lacrosse team will play at Hampton-Sydney (Va.) on Sunday and Guilford (N.C.) on Tuesday in an East-coast road trip to begin Spring Break. The Bears are 1-1 this season, coming off of a convincing 12-4 home win over Calvin last Saturday.

The ONU women’s lacrosse team will travel to Port Charlotte, Fla. for two games over Spring Break; the first one is next Tuesday against Kean (N.J.), with the second on Thursday against Marymount (Va.). Northern is 1-0 this season, as they beat Franciscan on Saturday in their opener. They will host Wooster this Friday night before heading South next week.