The Montana State University-Northern women’s basketball team has played very few games in 2012. But the Skylights are finally busy now.
Northern embarks on a three-game road trip starting tonight when it visits Evergreen State in Olympia, Wash. The Skylights then head south for games in Oregon against New Hope Christian on Friday night and Willamette University on Saturday night.
Northern comes into this weekend’s road trip fresh off a tough 56-50 loss to Carroll College last Thursday night in Havre. The game was the Frontier Conference opener for the Skylights, who are 3-3 overall.
Now MSU-N turns its attention to the remainder of its nonconference schedule. Tonight’s game at Evergreen State will be the first of three big challenges ahead of the Skylights this weekend. The GeoDucks have just one win on the season, but they do play in the difficult Cascade Conference, so Northern head coach Chris Mouat knows his team will have to play well in order to leave Washington with a win.
Friday night’s game at New Hope Christian will be an even bigger test. The Deacons are making the move from the NCCAA to the NAIA, and they already have a couple of big wins against Cascade Conference powers this season. The Skylights wrap up their road trip with Willamette University. The Bearcats are an NCAA DIII squad who are winless on the season, but will still present plenty of difficulties for the visiting Skylights.
And while on the road, Northern will look to turn around an offense which struggled last week against Carroll. MSU-N’s defense has been the best in the Frontier so far this season, but the Skylights only average around 53 points per game, and Mouat said that shooting will have to be better night-in-and-night-out in order for the Skylights to progress.
Nikki Tresch leads Northern in scoring at 15 points per game, while Jordan Bruursema averages nine points and six rebounds. Laci Keller is scoring seven points per game as is senior Kylee Denham.
Tonight’s game between the Skylights and Evergreen State will tip off at 6 in Olympia, Wash. Northern will play at 8 p.m. Friday night in Eugene, Ore., and 7 p.m. Saturday night in Salem, Ore. The Skylights return home to face Walla Walla College next Thursday and Saturday in the MSU-Northern Duck Inn Holiday Classic.