Spartans Pull Away From Regents in Second Half

Linzy Keller
Linzy Keller

AURORA, Ill. - The Rockford University women's basketball team (5-16, 3-13 NACC) had a very strong showing in the first half on Saturday before ultimately falling 89-51 to the Aurora University Spartans (11-10, 9-7 NACC). The Regents played well early on especially in the second quarter when Rockford outscored the Spartans 23-13. Unfortunately Spartans turned the tables on the Regents in the second half, outscoring Rockford 47-17. Aurora scorched the nets all game long, shooting 53.3% from the floor and 48.0% from long range. Aurora also held a decisive advantage in made three-pointers, knocking down 12 threes compared to just three for the Regents. 

Following a slow start in the opening quarter, Rockford really seemed to find its rhythm offensively in the second. The Spartans used a pair of 8-0 runs in the first quarter to build a 29-11 advantage after ten minutes of play. That momentum continued into the early portion of the second, as Aurora scored the first five points to pull in front 34-11. Fortunately the Regents hit the Spartans with a taste of their own medicine over the final five minutes of the half with a pair of 8-0 runs of their own. Linzy Keller (Rockford, Ill.) jumped-started the scoring with a pair of free throws followed by a Sammi Russell (Winnebago, Ill.) jumper, a triple off the hands of Nicole Silvers (Byron, Ill.) and a Tajanae Key (Glendale Heights, Ill.) free throw. After a Spartan three ended the first 8-0 Rockford run, the Regents scored the final eight points of the half to enter the break down just eight at 42-34. Keller was again the focal point of the Rockford offense as she scored six of the eight points with the other two coming from Silvers. 

Unfortunately things did not go Rockford's way over the final 20 minutes. Aurora quickly pushed its lead to double-digits in the opening moments of the third and then used a 13-0 run midway through the quarter to jump in front 68-39. The Spartans would extend their lead to as many as 40 points late in the fourth before ultimately winning by a final score of 89-51.

Both Nicole Silvers and Linzy Keller hit double-figures in scoring for Rockford. Silvers finished with a team-high 15 points, 5 rebounds and 3 steals. Keller tallied 12 points on 4-of-7 shooting and 1 rebound off the bench. 

The RU women's basketball team returns to the court on Wednesday, February 7 at home against Lakeland University. Tip-off is set for 7:00 PM at the Seaver Center.