Special to the Daily Times
GEORGETOWN, Ky. — Down 12 late, No. 13 Shawnee State rallied to close the gap.
A 9-2 run closed it to 74-69 but that was as close as it got, with No. 23 Georgetown earning an 85-75 victory Saturday at home.
The Bears made the first basket of the game but trailed for the vast majority of the game as the defense was unable to slow down the Tigers’ three-guard offense. Guard Kourtney Tyra led all scorers with 22 points, one of which put her over 1,000 for her career. She also had 13 assists. Fellow guard Andrea Howard scored 20 points.
“We tried three different defenses and we didn’t feel like we could stop them in any of them,” Shawnee State coach Robin Hagen-Smith said. “We should have scored enough points to win; we just gave up 85 points. That’s way too many points.”
In the second half, Georgetown slowly pulled away, hitting four three-pointers to SSU’s two throughout the half. When the lead reached 12, the Bears’ frontcourt was already in trouble as starter Schera Sampson and reserve Diane Abbady each had four fouls.
Despite the fouls, Sampson played big down the stretch. She scored seven of SSU’s nine points during the late run to close the gap before fouling out with 2:38 to play. She led the Bears with 20 points and seven rebounds.
Alex Pohl scored 19 points with 11 rebounds and Alannah Sheets scored 17 points. Abbady scored just four points but she pulled down nine rebounds.
“Schera was hot,” Hagen-Smith said. “We kept going to her and then she fouls out and we kind of fall apart. We were making a pretty good run there.”
The first half was a fairly-even match with the Tigers taking a 34-33 lead into the locker room. They managed to keep up with the higher-ranked Bears thanks to timely three-point shooting and SSU turnovers.
The Bears’ defense wasn’t getting many stops. But when they did, the next possession often ended with a turnover.
The same trend continued in the second half. SSU committed 24 turnovers to Georgetown’s 18. Four different Bears had four or more turnovers apiece.
“We had 24 turnovers,” Hagen-Smith said. “That’s our problem. It’s not just one person, its everybody.
Everybody turned it over here and there and they were unforced. It’s tough on the road. The Mid-South is a great conference. If we just eliminate some turnovers it’s a different game.”
Other scorers for the Bears included Allison Nagle and Abby Feuchter with five points each, Desirai Smith with four and Kara Long with one.
The loss drops SSU to 14-5 overall and 5-4 in the MSC. Georgetown improves to 11-6 and 5-4 in the conference.