FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – Amy Patton scored a Big Sky Conference record tying 41 points but it was not enough as Northern Arizona fell 95-83 to Bradley in the consolation game of the Hilton Garden Inn Thanksgiving Tournament Saturday afternoon.
"We can't allow 95 points and put them on the line 46 times," said Head Coach Sue Darling. "We have proven we can put some points on the board and Amy Patton is a great scorer. When we play defense like we are capable of this season, we are going to be a great team. Today was not that day."
Tulane (5-0) claimed the tournament title with a 66-48 victory over Western Michigan (2-3) in the championship game.
Bradley jumped to a 15-8 lead over the first five minutes but the Lumberjacks fought back in a close first half that featured six ties before the Braves took a four-point lead into the locker room at the half.
Bradley pulled away in the second half by making 23-of-27 free throw attempts, shooting 85 percent at the line. Overall, they made 35-of-47 attempts at the charity stripe on the night.
NAU cut the deficit to three points at 75-72 with seven minutes left on a pair of Patton free throws. But the Braves went on a 14-5 to push the lead back to 12 points with 1:40 left.
Patton finished with 41 points on 14-of-29 shooting and went 5-for-8 beyond the arc and 8-for-9 at the line adding seven rebounds and a school-record 10 steals.
"She is a talented kid," said Darling. "But at the same time I know she does not want to be the leading scorer on a 0-6 team. We have to start playing some defense."
The 41 points were the second-best single-game performance in school history and tied the Big Sky Conference record for points. Her 29 shot attempts were the second-best single-game total while her 14 field goals made are the third-best all-time in school history. She set single-game career-highs for points, steals and field goal attempts, becoming the second player in school history to score 40 or more points in a game (Peggy Kennedy, 45 vs. Utah State in 1979).
NAU shot 44 percent for the game and had a good night at the line, hitting 19-of-24 attempts.
NAU is off for six days before traveling to California for a pair of games next weekend, starting with a game at Cal State Fullerton on Nov. 30.
Hilton Garden Inn Thanksgiving Tournament All-Tournament Team
Amy Patton, Northern Arizona
Catie O'Leary, Bradley
Corie Buchanan, Western Michigan
Olivia Grayson. Tulane
Janique Kautsky, Tulane (MVP)