CHICAGO, Ill. – SIUE women's basketball never trailed Saturday and rolled to an 82-66 victory over Chicago State at the Jacoby Dickens Center.
SIUE improved to 4-3 with the win. Chicago State dropped to 0-8.
After a quick 4-4 tie, Nakiah Bell hit a three-pointer with 7:38 left in the opening period as SIUE didn't look back.
The Cougars gained a 19-point lead midway through the game capped off by a three-pointer by Mikia Keith at the halftime buzzer.
"We got out and decided we were going to play more intense defense, and I thought that helped our offense," said SIUE Head Coach Paula Buscher. "We got more transition buckets."
SIUE grabbed 19 steals, the most by a Cougar team since the 2012-13 season, and recorded 37 points off turnovers.
The lead was as big as 24 points in the second half, and the Cougars posted a double-digit lead for the rest of the contest.
"We did a good job of sharing the ball tonight," said Buscher. "It's going to help having more scorers down the stretch. We're still a better offensive team than what we showed tonight."
Kourtney Crane sparked Chicago State with a game-high 23 points, including a 12-for-12 performance from the free throw line.
SIUE held Chicago State to 32.2 percent shooting (19-59) from the field while connecting on 45.9 percent of its own shots (28-61).
"It was a great team effort," said Buscher. "We had a lot of players who got in. I loved the team's energy on and off the floor."