Northwestern Oklahoma State controlled the boards on Tuesday night, and as a result, the Rangers controlled their basketball game against Oklahoma Christian.
Northwestern rode a 44-29 edge in rebounding to an 80-60 win over the Lady Eagles in the Eagles' Nest, ending OC's two-game winning streak. Bailey Brown poured in 27 points and grabbed eight rebounds for Northwestern, one of four Rangers who scored in double figures.
OC (2-3) only had two double-figure scorers – junior forward Katie Mayo, who had her first double-double of the season with 10 points and 12 rebounds, and freshman forward Amaya Buchanan, who played only seven minutes but scored 11 points (the first of her collegiate career) on 5-of-7 shooting. But outside of Mayo, no other OC player had more than four rebounds.
OC shot 33.9% (20-of-59) from the field, compared to 48.3% (28-of-58) for Northwestern. The Rangers had a big 19-9 advantage in second-chance points.
"I just thought we were flat," OC coach Stephanie Findley said. "We never got any energy going. Maybe that's part of the schedule, but (Northwestern) has had just as tough of a schedule and they were on the road and we were at home. We didn't get one loose ball, we didn't get one long rebound. That's just want-to. It was just a lack of showing up tonight and I don't know why."
The Lady Eagles, who played without usual starting guard Megan Shelton, never led. They did rally from an early six-point deficit to tie the game at 14-14 on a 3-pointer by Tyra Peck in the final minute of the first quarter, but the Rangers outscored OC 20-8 in the second quarter, with Brown scoring 10 of those points.
Northwestern (4-3) stretched its lead to as many as 22 points in the second half, at 66-44 with 6:27 left. But led by Buchanan and fellow freshman Shelby Garrett, OC rallied. Buchanan sank a 7-foot floater in the line with 2:39 left to pull the Lady Eagles within 70-60, but Northwestern closed the game out from there at the free-throw line.
Garrett finished with five points, also the first of her collegiate career.
"Shelby hit a three, and that's why I put her in there, to see if she could do it," Findley said. "Also, she a good defender and we were trying to press and she's long and fast.
"Amaya hasn't had an opportunity yet. She's had a lot of things that have held her back this preseason, where she hasn't been able to practice, so in that kind of game, where you're really not running much anyway because of the way they extending their zone, you might as well put her in and see what she can do and she proved she can do it. I was really pleased with both of them and how they played."
OC won't play again until Dec. 5, when the Lady Eagles will visit last season's NCAA Division II runner-up, Southwestern Oklahoma State. Their next home game will be Dec. 14 against Lone Star Conference rival Arkansas-Fort Smith.