UMHB edged by Cowgirls, 70-63
Thursday, 31 January 2013 by Matthew Girard
The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor's Taylor Tucker registered her fifth double-double of the American Southwest Conference season and Kourtney Bevers scored 10 points, but it wasn't enough as the Crusaders dropped their fifth straight game on Saturday with a 70-63 loss to Hardin-Simmons University.
Although the Crusaders (2-12, 1-5 ASC) trailed by six in the early going, behind Tucker's 10 first-half points and a 16-6 run in the final 10 minutes of the half, UMHB took a 30-28 lead into halftime.
In the second half, Bevers helped extend the Crusader's lead to five, 33-28, with a 3-pointer with 18:58 left in the second half, but a series of turnovers and missed opportunities doomed UMHB.
Hardin-Simmons' Candace Pollard hit a 3-pointer with 14:05 left in the game to give the Cowgirls (7-8, 5-4 ASC) a 42-37 lead.
The Cowgirls' Joanna Daniel extended the lead back to six, 56-50, with a 3-pointer with 7:06 left in the game, but UMHB's Katelyn Smith tied the game at 56 with a layup two minutes later.
Although Tucker would tie the game at 59 with 2:35 left in the game with a free throw, late turnovers and HSU's free-throw shooting down the stretch ended UMHB's comeback.
"We literally handed them that game. That's more sickening then getting outright beat," UMHB coach Lisa Curliss-Taylor said.
Despite consistently getting to the basket in the first half and shooting 40 percent from the field, UMHB couldn't get back into its offensive rhythm in the second half.
"Our whole game plan was to attack the basket, but we decided we were going to start jacking up shots," Curliss-Taylor said. "We got out of that game plan and got tired and lazy. That's a problem. We have to learn how to win."
HSU's Alexis Popelar led all scorers with 21 points and Taylor Rose added 11 points for the Cowgirls.
UMHB will now be on a six-game road game streak starting at 5:30 p.m. tonight against Texas Lutheran. The Cru will return home on Feb. 7 for a game against Schreiner.