Jan. 1, 2012
By Bill Ford
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. — The Southern Illinois women’s basketball team rallied from a steep first-half deficit but couldn’t complete the comeback in a 72-66 loss Sunday at Indiana State.
The Salukis (3-9, 0-2 MVC) rallied from down 19 in the first half to take a 49-47 lead with 10:52 remaining in the game. Southern couldn’t make any headway in the closing minutes, however, as the Sycamores (8-6, 2-0 MVC) made free throws down the stretch while the Salukis struggled from the charity stripe.
“You can not let 50 percent free throw shooting cost us a game, and it did,” said SIU coach Missy Tiber. “Our kids got a little bit nervous down the stretch. I was proud of the effort that we gave, but there are no moral victories. We’re still trying to build.”
Southern stuck with ISU through the opening six minutes before hitting a scoring drought. The Sycamores scored 19 unanswered over the next seven minutes to take their biggest lead of the game at 28-9 with 6:27 left in the half.
The Salukis out-scored ISU 12-10 over the remainder of the half, but went into the break down 38-21. SIU’s 17 first-half turnovers translated to 22 points for the Sycamores.
“That is about as mad as I’ve been in a long time,” Tiber said of the halftime break. “It was nothing about Indiana State and everything about Southern Illinois. You can’t have 17 turnovers and think you can compete.”
Southern bounced back to open the second half, out-scoring the Sycamores 28-10 through the first nine minutes of the half to pull ahead. The Salukis cut their turnovers in the second half and generated some offense in transition. SIU scored 19 points off turnovers in the second half.
“In the second half we were well prepared,” Tiber said. “We did everything we could as a team and as a coaching staff except make free throws.”
Meanwhile, the Sycamores hit 15-of-21 free throws in the second half, including 4-of-4 with under 30 seconds to play to put the game on ice.
“That’s what we recruited her for. She was going after it and being aggressive and wanting the ball,” Tiber said of Patterson. “She was going against one of the best post players if not the best 5-spot in the league and that’s how aggressive she was tonight.”
Also for the Salukis, Cartaesha Macklin finished with nine points and seven assists while Jordyn Courier chipped in six rebounds and three steals. Senior center Shannon Thomas paced the Sycamores with 20 points and nine rebounds while Brittany Schoen added 14 points and Deja Mattox had 13 points.
The loss marked Southern’s fifth straight and ended a five-game road swing for the Salukis. SIU will be back at SIU Arena Thursday, Jan. 5 to take on Bradley for their first home tilt in nearly a month.