GRAND FORKS, N.D. – North Dakota outscored Sacramento State 26-12 in the first quarter and led by double figures for the rest of the game in a 94-71 win on Saturday afternoon in Grand Forks.
Sacramento State (4-9, 0-2 Big Sky) was held to just 33 points in the first half and finished with a season-low 71 points despite an improved second half. North Dakota (7-6, 2-0 Big Sky) shot 49% from the field, a superb 28-of-33 (85%) at the free throw line, and had a commanding 60-36 rebounding advantage. The two teams combined to shoot 61 free throws in the game with 47 fouls called, including 29 against the Hornets.
Senior Emily Easom led the Hornets with 19 points, shooting 10-of-12 at the free throw line. Junior Maranne Johnson made three 3-pointers, hitting multiple threes in her 12th game this season, and had 18 points and two steals. Johnson now has 177 made 3-pointers in her career, moving up to second place on the all-time program list behind only Alle Moreno (238).
The Hornets shot 3-of-14 (21%) in the first quarter on Saturday and could never recover. UND had a 16-7 rebounding edge in the period and had a 10-0 run late in the quarter to take an early 15-point lead. Sacramento State attempted only seven 3-pointers in the first half, making three, and trailed 49-33 at the break.
North Dakota led by at least 15 points throughout the third quarter and took a game-high 26 point lead at the 7:33 mark of the fourth. The Hornets were 0-of-10 from 3-point range in the third quarter but 5-of-13 in the fourth, matching the Fighting Hawks 20-20 in the final period.
Sacramento State finished 8-of-30 (27%) from 3-point range. The Hornets are 4-1 this season when shooting better than 30% from 3-point range but winless (0-8) when shooting below 30% from distance.
The Hornets forced 21 turnovers in the game and outscored UND 21-12 in points off turnovers. The visitors also had 18 offense rebounds but North Dakota had 19, finishing with a 24-19 advantage in second chance points.
Makailah Dyer led four UND players in double figure with 21 points and five assists. Samantha Roscoe had 18 points and eight boards and Lexi Klabo totaled 16 points and 17 rebounds. The Fighting Hawks totaled nine blocks.
Sacramento State plays its next three games at home with its conference home opener next Saturday at noon vs. Portland State.