Lady Cougars Win; Cougars Fall At Motlow State
Sunday, February 3, 2013
LYNCHBURG - Cleveland State completed a weekend conference road trip on Saturday afternoon with a trip to Motlow State. The Lady Cougars got back on the winning track as they held off a determined herd of Lady Bucks with a 60-56 win, while the short-handed Cougars dropped their second game in as many days by a final score of 91-79 to the talented Bucks.
The Lady Cougars started quickly as they hit the Lady Bucks with a 26-10 run to start the game. Robyn Anthony, Jara Gasper and Mercedes Owens all connected from three-point land in the early going as the visitors threated to run away and hide. Chelsey Jones and Carly Fetzer added three tough buckets in the paint in the early going as well as a pair of steals and layups from Anthony.
The Lady Bucks suddenly came to life and began to slice into the lead with a run of their own. Chelsey Wiseman scored eight points in the final three minutes of the half including a three-pointer as the home team cut the lead to only seven points, 29-22 at halftime. Wiseman almost single-handedly kept her team in the game with 13 of the Lady Bucks 22 points.
The Lady Cougars knocked down five more treys in the second half and as it would turn out, each and every one would come at a crucial time. Back to back bombs from downtown from Me'Lisa Martinez helped the Lady Cougars take a 10-point lead midway through the second half, but the Lady Bucks just would not go away as they continued to chip away at the lead.
Motlow State got within a point of pulling off the upset as they cut the lead to a single point at 54-53 at the 1:04 mark, but the Lady Cougars were equal to the challenge as they stepped to the Charity stripe and hit six of eight free tosses in the final minute to hang on and secure the big Region VII win. The Lady Cougars hit 15 of their 24 free throws in the game, but were 11 of 13 in the second half while the Lady Bucks hit only 15 of 28.
"We played in spurts today," stated Lady Cougar coach Dan Lumpkin. "Give Motlow credit, they are a scrappy team, but we have to be more consistent and put teams away when we have the chance. We did knock down some big free throws when we had too and any time you can get a win on the road in this conference it is a good thing."
Gasper paced the Lady Cougars (13-7, 6-5) with 16 points, Anthony finished with 14 and Jones added eight. Wiseman finished with 21 points to lead the Lady Bucks while Erica Ervin and Presley Owen added 11 and 10 respectively.
BUCKS 91 COUGARS 79
The Bucks set the tone from the opening tip as they executed an alley-oop slam dunk on the first shot of the game to bring the homecoming crowd to its feet as Kerrell Davis fed Chris Hawkins for the rim-rattler. JC Bonny helped the home team extend its lead to 10 points midway through the half, but from there the Cougars came to life and hit their hosts with an 11-0 run to take a 22-21 lead as Kahan Swift and Ralph Eason nailed a three ball each.
The lead changed hands 10 times the rest of the half in the seesaw affair as Hawkins added another slam for the Bucks, but Filipe Goncalves hit a shot from downtown for the Cougars to tie the game at 40 all at the break.
The Cougars traded baskets with the much taller Bucks for several minutes to open the second half, but then the Bucks took contol of the game with a 19-3 run. With the game tied at 50, DJ Jones entered the zone as the point guard began to rain down three-pointers on the Cougars from seemingly all points on the floor. When the dust had settled, Jones had hit five shots from three-point land in about a six minute span of time, and one that turned into a four-point play as the Motlow lead ballooned to 69-53.
Eason hit a tri-fecta of threes and converted a four-point play of his own as the Cougars cut the lead back to 10 points and Trey Suttles added several shots in the paint, but it wouldn't be nearly enough as Bucks hit nine of 12 free tosses down the stretch to secure the win.
Suttles led the Cougars (11-7, 6-5) with 22 points while Eason added 21. Jones paced the Bucks with 26 points while Hawkins added 14.