MARYVILLE, Mo. – Northwest Missouri State made 10 three-pointers in the first half, helping the Bearcats to a big early lead and a 73-61 win over St. Mary’s University in women’s basketball action Monday night at Bearcat Arena.

NMSU took control of the game early, thanks to long-range shooting proficiency. With the score tied at 5-5 with 17:49 left in the first half the Bearcats’ Katie O’Grady hit on four straight shots, including three three-pointers to help spark a 24-6 run, giving NMSU a 29-11 lead with 9:03 to play in the first period. O’Grady finished the first half with 17 points, including 5-of-5 from three-point range. The Bearcats took a 44-28 lead into the locker room. The Rattlers cut the lead to 11 points at one point, but that was as close as they would get.

Three Rattlers reached double figures in the game, led by Charlena Rodez (Sr., Cedar Park) with 14 points. Dawn Killian (Sr., San Antonio) had 12 points, while Juanita Merchant (Jr., Angleton) reached double figures for the first time this season with 11 points. Ashton Benford (So., Waxahachie) led all players with nine rebounds.

For the Bearcats O’Grady led the way with 21 points. Jessica Burton had 15 points, while Mandi Schumacher and Meghan Brue had 13 points each.

With the loss the Rattlers fell to 1-7 overall and have lost seven straight games. NMSU improved to 7-1. St. Mary’s will continue its seven-game road trip with a visit to Missouri Western on Wednesday at 6 p.m.

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