By Jason Shoot
Barring a total season-ending collapse, the Montana State
University-Northern women's basketball team has secured
itself a berth in the NAIA national tournament next month.
But first, the Skylights must protect its second-place spot
in the Frontier Conference with two difficult games this
week against Carroll College and Rocky Mountain College.
Northern hosts Carroll tonight at 6 p.m. and Rocky Mountain
Saturday, also at 6.
"We need to close this out," Northern coach Kevin Emerick
said. "If we can get the number two seed and avoid playing
Lewis-Clark State until the finals, that would be huge."
Carroll is fresh off victories against L-C State and
Westminster last week. The win against Westminster allowed
Northern to surge into second place in the Frontier
Emerick said the Skylights must be concerned about
Carroll's point guard, Jennifer Curl.
"We have to be aware of where she is all the time," Emerick
Emerick also announced two of his regular starters Anna
Fabatz and Davina Shoemake will not start tonight due to
disciplinary action after each athlete missed curfew.
Montana State University-Northern men's basketball coach
Tim Walker has enjoyed his players' recent success, which he
said has been a result of working hard and being mentally
prepared for opponents.
But he cautioned the Lights will certainly need that again
this week if they are to be successful against Carroll and
Northern hosts 14th-ranked Carroll at 8 p.m. tonight and
will host Rocky Mountain Saturday at 8.
"Carroll is a solid team," Walker said. "We need to defend
their three-point shooters and defend the perimeter. We have
to slow down (J.D.) Solomon (averaging 20.9 points a game)
and then score ourselves."
Walker believes the Lights have to score more than 80
points to pull out a win.
"I think we're better when we're able to get out and run
get some quick shots and some transition buckets."
Another key will be harassing Carroll point guard Shane
Gamradt, who is tops in the Frontier at 7.8 assists a game
and does an excellent job controlling the tempo in favor of
"They're going to get out and run, too," Walker said.
"They've got a