Northern Kentucky University basketball 2018-19
Courtesy NKU Athletics

Drew McDonald became the first NKU player in more than 46 years to record at least 20 rebounds in a game, and Jalen Tate added a career-high 25 points, as the Northern Kentucky University men’s basketball team defeated UIC 73-58 on Sunday afternoon. With the win, NKU moves to 12-3 on the season a 2-0 in Horizon League action, while UIC slips to 7-8 overall and 1-1 in league play.


  • Tate had 25 points behind 8-of-11 shooting, including 2-of-3 from long range, and six assists on the evening.
  • McDonald contributed 19 points and career-high 20 rebounds for his fourth-straight double-double and eighth of the year. In games against Horizon League opponents, he has 16 double-doubles in the last 22 outings.
  • Dantez Walton just missed out on a double-double with 15 points and eight rebounds.


  • UIC cut the NKU lead to eight points with 5:32 to play, but the Norse outscored the Flames 8-1 over the rest of the game to get the 73-58 victory. NKU held UIC scoreless over the final 3:52 of the contest.


  • The game started out as a defensive battle, as UIC led 4-2 at the first media timeout.
  • NKU had a 23-18 advantage with 8:47 to play in the stanza after a layup by Tate. UIC responded with a layup of its own to cut the Norse lead to three points, but NKU went on a 9-0 run to jump out to a 32-20 advantage with 4:30 remaining. Walton hit back-to-back three-pointers in the run.
  • The Norse extended their lead to 16 points and had a 44-28 advantage at the break.
  • Tate scored 22 points in the first half, and he made or assisted 11 of NKU’s 14 field goals in the stanza.
  • Walton added nine points, and McDonald pulled in 10 rebounds.
  • NKU shot 14-of-30 (46.7 percent) from the floor and 5-of-12 (41.7 percent) on three-pointers.
  • The Norse held UIC to just 7-of-23 (30.4 percent) shooting on field goals, including a 2-of-13 (15.4 percent) mark on attempts from behind the arc.
  • NKU’s bench outscored UIC’s bench 27-11, and the Norse also had a 7-0 advantage in second-chance points.


  • UIC trimmed NKU’s lead to 10 points at 47-37 with 14:50 remaining in the contest.
  • McDonald went on a 6-0 run by himself to extend the NKU lead to 64-46 with 7:54 left in the game.
  • The Flames put together an 8-0 run to cut the NKU lead to 65-57 with 5:32 to play.
  • NKU closed the game on an 8-1 run down the stretch and held UIC scoreless over the final 3:52 of the game to get the 73-58 victory.
  • The Norse shot 8-of-18 (44.4 percent) on field goals in the second half.
  • UIC went 12-of-29 (41.4 percent) from the floor, but just 3-of-12 (25.0 percent) on three-pointers.


  • The last NKU player to record at least 20 rebounds was Jim McMillan on Dec. 18, 1972. He pulled in 23 rebounds in a game against Anderson (Ind.).
  • Tate’s previous career-high in points was 17 against Wilmington earlier this season on Nov. 11, 2018.
  • The Norse improve to 10-0 at BB&T Arena on the year.
  • NKU shot 22-of-48 (45.8 percent) during the game.
  • The Norse held UIC to 19-of-52 (36.5 percent) shooting, including just 5-of-25 (20.0 percent) on three-point attempts. This marks the ninth game of the season in which the Norse limited their opponent below 40 percent shooting and the ninth time an opponent has failed to connect on 30 percent of its 3-point attempts.
  • NKU had a 12-0 advantage in second-chance points and a 46-27 rebounding advantage.


  • The Norse travel to Oakland on Thursday, Jan. 3. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m., and the game will be broadcast live on ESPN+.  


Ryan Wilker

Northern Kentucky University


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