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Published: Sunday, 2/1/2004

UT women win a close one

It was close all the way, but the Unviersity of Toledo women s basketball team defeated Northern Illinois 62-60 last night in front of 2,396 fans at Savage Hall.

UT junior center Karin Hoogendam scored the game s first three points, and the Rockets never trailed. But they never led by more than eight points either.

Toledo improved to 10-9 overall and 6-2 in the Mid-American Conference.

“This was definitely a strange game,” Toledo coach Mark Ehlen said. “If you look at the stats, it would look like we lost by 15 points.”

Hoogendam led UT with 16 points. She was 6-for-14 from the field and 4-for-7 from the free-throw line.

Freshman guard Danielle Bishop and senior guard Mary Blessing each added 10 points. Blessing also had a team-high five assists. Senior forward Julie Hillis had 15 rebounds.

Joi Scott came off the bench to score 13 points for Northern Illinois (9-10, 4-4).

Northern Illinois shot 54.8 percent from the field (23-for-42), but committed 19 turnovers.

UT had only seven turnovers.

“I m real happy with so few turnovers,” said Ehlen. “If you look at the stats, that is the only real plus we had over them, so I think that had something to do with the victory.

The Rockets led 59-57 with 1:14 left in the game, but Hillis scored and Bishop hit one of two free throws to stretch the margin to five points with 11 seconds left.

Northern Illinois Stephanie Raymond hit a 3-pointer with six seconds.

“We made timely plays and baskets down the stretch,” Ehlen said.

The Rockets play at Buffalo on Tuesday.

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