FAIRMONT, W. Va. – The Urbana University women’s basketball team let its second-half lead slip away in a 74-70 loss to Fairmont State. The matchup between the Blue Knights and Falcons featured 11 ties and five lead changes, while neither team led by double digits.
UU dropped its third straight while falling to 10-9 overall and 8-7 in league play. FSU improved to 11-10 (6-9 MEC) on the season, while avenging an earlier loss this season to the Blue Knights.
Sophomore forward Sylvia Hudson led UU with 17 points on 7-of-13 shooting from the floor. Hudson scored UU’s final eight points of the game in the late comeback attempt. Junior guard Megan Beachy registered 16 points. She scorched the net in the first half, going into halftime with 14 points on 4-of-4 shooting from three-point range.
Senior guard Stefanie Davis (15) also reached double figures with six boards and four assists. Davis is now 11 points shy of reaching 1,000 for her career. Senior forward Jazmyn Haley secured a team-high eight boards while junior guard Erin Morrow notched seven.
For FSU, Sierra Kotchman led all scorers with 18 points and Kelli Jo Harrison registered a double-double with 16 points and 10 boards.
UU never trailed during the first and second quarters, but could not extend its lead past six as the Falcons stayed within striking distance.
There were five ties over the first two stanzas and both teams shot over 40 percent from three-point range, where they combined for 10 made threes by the intermission. Beachy drained two threes in the first quarter to help give UU a 12-10 advantage, and then the junior kept it going in the second with two additional treys.
At the under-five media timeout in the second quarter, UU led 25-19 after three straight threes, two from Danie Shafer and one from Beachy. FSU worked its way back to knot the score, and then the two squads were tied with under a minute left until the break. Morrow’s pair of free throws right before the buzzer put UU ahead 30-29.
Shortly after halftime, FSU grabbed its first lead and the two teams went back-and-forth the rest of the way. A pair of three-point plays by Haley and Hudson in the post built momentum with a seven-point UU lead, 44-37, with four minutes left in the third. However, FSU worked its way back and evened the score at 50-50 on a trey near the end of the frame.
Then, the Blue Knights were forced to play from behind as the Falcons went up four within the first two minutes. But, another pair of three-point plays by Haley and Davis on back-to-back possessions reclaimed the lead for UU, 60-58, with 5:40 remaining.
The trend continued, though, and the Falcons responded with two more treys to go back ahead 66-62. Hudson’s steal and layup tied the score at 66-66 with 1:51 remaining, but UU could not regain the lead. Hudson got her final layup to go down with eight seconds left to make it 72-20 Falcons but FSU hit two free throws to seal the contest.
Both teams struggled from the floor overall with UU shooting 38 percent and FSU finishing at a 41-pecent clip. However, UU did not make a 3-pointer in the second half to finish 6 of 16 from beyond the arc while FSU hit four threes in each half (8 of 19). UU held the rebounding advantage and shot a perfect 18 for 18 at the charity stripe. The Blue Knights had 13 turnovers while the Falcons took better care of the ball with only 10.
UU caps the road trip on Saturday with a 2 p.m. matchup at Shepherd. The Rams have dropped four in a row, including a 78-72 home loss to Notre Dame (OH) on Thursday.
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