Feb. 9, 2013
YPSILANTI, Mich. – The Ohio University Women’s Basketball Team dropped a close cross-divisional contest at Mid-American Conference West Division foe Eastern Michigan on Saturday afternoon, losing to the Eagles by a final score of 64-57.
Ohio trailed by as much as 18 in the second half but went on an impressive run, coming back to within two points (59-57) with less than 60 seconds remaining in the game.
Erin Bailes scored a game-high 19 points, shooting a solid 7-15 from the field which included a 5-10 mark from three-point range. She was followed closely by Mariah Byard, who scored 14 points on 5-7 shooting (4-6 from range). Bailes also pulled down a game and career-high nine rebounds in the loss.
Eastern Michigan (6-17, 4-6 MAC) was led in scoring by Bianca Cage’s 16 points. She was joined in double figures by Natachia Watkins (12), India Hairston (12), and Desyree Thomas (11). The Eagles shot 28-59 (47.5 percent) from the field for the game, including a 4-11 (36.4 percent) mark from three-point range.
Ohio ended the contest shooting 20-51 (39.2 percent) from the field. The Bobcats tied a season-high in three point field goals made, hitting 10-26 (38.5 percent) attempts from long range. Bailes and Byard accounted for nine of these 10 three-pointers.
Eastern Michigan leapt out to an early 5-0 lead, but Ohio answered back with an 8-0 run of its own to take an early three-point lead at the 17:08 mark. The early portion of the game see-sawed back and forth, with the teams playing to a 13-13 tie at the first media timeout (13:29). Bailes (Huntington, W.Va.) led all scorers with eight points while the ‘Cats shot 5-10 from the field, including a 3-7 mark from three-point distance.
Ohio (5-17, 0-10 MAC) trailed by one point (22-21) with 7:38 remaining, but the Eagles would ultimately end the first half on a 13-7 run to earn a 35-28 advantage at the break.
Both teams operated at an efficient clip in the first frame, as the Eagles shot 50 percent (16-32) while the Bobcats connected on 45.8 percent (11-24) of their field-goal attempts. Ohio hit five three-pointers in the first frame, three of which came from Bailes. The Bobcats moved the ball quite well in the first 20 minutes, registering nine assists on their 11 field goals. Ohio would ultimately end the game with 17 assists, tying a season high.
With Eastern Michigan holding a six-point lead (39-33), back-to-back three-pointers by Bianca Cage doubled the Eagles’ advantage with 12:44 remaining in the contest. This was part of a larger 12-0 run which would see the hosts take a 51-33 lead with slightly less than 10 minutes to play.
The Bobcats battled back, getting within 10 points (56-46) when Byard (Mannington, W.Va.) connected on back-to-back three-pointers, forcing the Eagles to take a timeout with 4:38 remaining in the game. A three by Bailes put the ‘Cats within seven (56-49) at the 3:43 mark and then another got them within four just slightly less than a minute later.
Ohio would get within two points when Tina Fisher (Cottage Grove, Minn.) hit a layup with 52 seconds remaining in the game. EMU then scored the next five points to put the game away.
Ohio will next be in action on Saturday, Feb. 16 against Western Michigan. The Bobcats and Broncos will tip off from Athens at 4 p.m. on SportsTime Ohio.
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