Friday, December 07, 2001

Cottrell closes in on mark

40th double-double leads NKU to 6-0

By Ray Schaefer
Enquirer contributor

        HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. — If people didn't keep telling Northern Kentucky senior forward Michelle Cottrell she's closing in on the women's career basketball scoring record, she might not know.

        But in NCAA Division II, nobody is better than Cottrell. The 5-foot-11 Boone County graduate scored 20 points and grabbed 14 rebounds in the Norse's 81-73 win over Kentucky Wesleyan Thursday at Regents Hall.

        Cottrell — the reigning Division II Player of the Year — has 1,832 points and is 51 away from the school record of 1,883 set by Peggy Vincent from 1975-79. Thursday was also the 40th double-double in points and rebounds in Cottrell's career.

        But Cottrell was upset Thursday about her 6-of-10 free throw shooting.

        She averages 20.4 points and 10.4 rebounds a game.

        “It seems like it makes you feel excited,” Cottrell said of the scoring record. “It's a great achievement. It's not something I concentrated on.”

        Though Cottrell's 17.6-point career scoring average going into this season passed Vincent, and her 59.7 shooting percentage is tops in school history, Cottrell has done more than score.

        Thursday's rebounds gave her 876 for her career, tying her with Barb Harkins (1978-82) for second place behind Vincent's 1,166.

        “She's a great competitor; she has great heart,” NKU coach Nancy Winstel said. “She's a coach's dream.”
       Cottrell, who averages 20.4 points and 10.4 rebounds a games this year, finished the first half with 11 points and nine rebounds, but Wesleyan's defense held her to just a pair of free throws the final 10:08.

        And largely because of that, Wesleyan tied the game at 27-27 with 2:25 left in the half and trailed by just 34-30 at halftime.

        A 19-8 NKU run led by Cottrell's six points and Bridget Flanagan's four made it 66-51 with 8:49 left in the game. Wesleyan closed to 79-73 with 1:01 left in the game but came no closer.

        Leslie Warren led Wesleyan with 22 points.

        KY. WESLEYAN (1-6, 0-5) — Waters 2-4 3-4 7, Vaal 5-13 6-6 16, Carmichael 1-5 0-0 2, Reynolds 1-5 0-0 2, Purvis 4-12 2-2 11, Vincent 0-1 0-0 0, Warren 6-10 8-9 22, Peters 3-8 2-2 8, Clarke 0-1 2-2 2, Neal 1-3 1-2 3. Totals: 23-62 24-27 73.

        NORTHERN KENTUCKY (6-0, 4-0) — Cottrell 7-10 6-10 20, Polosky 4-9 2-4 11, Mobley 5-9 3-4 13, Smith 2-5 2-2 7, Flanagan 6-18 2-4 16, Burrows 1-3 2-4 4, Myers 2-3 0-0 4, Schubeler 3-8 0-0 6. Totals: 30-65, 17-28 81.

        Halftime: Northern Kentucky led, 34-30. Three-point goals: KW 3-of-11 (Reynolds 0-2, Purvis 1-3, Warren 2-5, Peters 0-1); NKU 4-of-16 (Polosky 1-5, Mobley 0-1, Smith 1-1, Flanagan 2-9). Fouled out: KW-Carmichael; NKU-Polosky. Rebounds: KW 40 (Vaal 9); NKU 42 (Cottrell 14). Assists: KW 10 (Peters 6); NKU 16 (Polosky 4). Turnovers: KW 18 (Carmichael 4, Peters 4); NKU 15 (Cottrell 4). Blocks: KW 2 (Carmichael, Purvis); NKU 4 (Polosky 2). Steals: KW 9 (Warren 5), NKU 10 (Polosky 3). Total Fouls: KW 23, NKU 18.


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