Northern Illinois Scores Just Four Points In First Half In Loss To Eastern Michigan

Northern Illinois set an NCAA Division I record for futility by scoring just four points in the first half of its loss to Eastern Michigan.

The team the Huskies beat out for the embarrassing record — that would be Northern Illinois of a few weeks ago.

An offensively challenged Northern Illinois team had scored just five points in a matchup against Dayton on December 1. That put them tied for the record for worst output in a half in Division I history, ESPN noted. Until Saturday, that is.

Despite the terrible offensive showing, Northern Illinois actually had good defense in the game. At halftime it had held Eastern Michigan to just 18 points, though the Huskies trailed 18-4.

The four-point first half for Northern Illinois featured some atrocious shooting. The team went 1-for-31 from the field, including 29 consecutive misses. Strangely, the only shot they hit from the field was to start the game, giving them a short-lived 2-0 lead.

“Our guys played hard,” Huskies coach Mark Montgomery said. “Unfortunately, we just couldn’t make a shot. We just needed someone to make a basket to get our team going, but I wouldn’t say that we were taking bad shots. We had makeable, open shots, they just wouldn’t go in, but our guys kept defending, kept playing hard.”

The Huskies’ field goal percentage in the first half — 3.2 percent — set another NCAA record for futility, USA Today noted. The putrid shooting edged out Savannah State’s 4.3 percent shooting half against Kansas State on January 7, 2008.

After the four-point first half, Northern Illinois was able to turn up its offense a bit in the second half. The team scored 21 points, though still finished with another
NCAA record worst — 13.1 percent shooting for the entire game.