UNI women level league record by beating Salukis

CEDAR FALLS – The Northern Iowa women used big first-half runs to gain an advantage and then cruised to an easy win over Southern Illinois Thursday night at McLeod Center.

Jacqui Kalin scored at least 20 points for the 10th time this season, freshman Hannah Schonhardt added 15 points and a team-high nine rebounds and the Panthers dominated the glass in a 76-59 win.

Kalin hit three 3-pointers and scored 20 points in the win as the Panthers (9-11) evened their Missouri Valley Conference record at 4-4.

UNI led 35-27 at the half on the strength of a 13-2 run and a 9-0 spurt. The lead got to as large as 19 in the second half.

The Panthers out-rebounded the Salukis, 46-29, made nine 3-pointers and connected on 19-of-26 from the line. Southern Illinois (4-15) was just 3-of-15 from long range and hit just 10-of-19 from the charity stripe in dropping to 1-7 in MVC play.

Jen Keitel, Amber Kirschbaum and Brittni Donaldson all scored nine points for the Panthers. Keitel also had seven boards and Brooke Brown finished with four assists.

Former AGWSR standout Jess McDowell hit two 3-pointers and finished with six points.

Southern Illinois was led by Cartaesha Macklin’s 17 points and five assists. Rishonda Napier added 12 points, but the Salukis made just 40 percent of their shots.

UNI will play host to Evansville at 7 p.m. Saturday in the McLeod Center.