Dec. 5, 2013
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CLEVELAND - The Ohio University women's basketball team (3-4) built a 10-point first-half lead, but Cleveland State University (4-4) rallied to secure a 76-64 victory on Thursday (Dec. 5) at the Wolstein Center.
The loss marked Ohio's third straight and fourth in the last five games. The contest also marked the end of a six-game road swing for the Bobcats.
"If we can win the conference games later and learn from these losses, then it will be worth it," said first-year head coach Bob Boldon of his team's lengthy road trip. "Time will tell. It's a very, very long season."
Three players achieved double figures in scoring for Ohio, and the Bobcats won both the rebounding (51-29) and points in the paint (30-14) battles. The 51 rebounds marked the most for Ohio since the Bobcats hauled in 52 boards on Nov. 26, 2011, against Chicago State.
Unfortunately for Ohio, Cleveland State knocked down 11 treys, went 21-for-25 (84%) from the free throw line and scored 23 points off turnovers to capture the victory.
"They did a nice job," said Boldon of Cleveland State. "Cleveland State is a good team and has beaten some pretty good teams along the way. They're just a little bit better than us right now. We've got a lot of maturing to do and a lot of things to learn about the game of basketball."
Cleveland State senior forward Haley Schmitt led all scorers with 20 points and achieved a double-double with 10 rebounds. Junior forward Imani Gordon and junior guard Kiersten Green also reached double digits in scoring with 18 and 13, respectively.
Junior guard Mariah Byard (Mannington, W. Va.) nailed four treys and led the Bobcats with 16 points, marking the fourth time this season she's reached double figures.
Freshman guard Quiera Lampkins (Gahanna, Ohio) achieved her first career double-double with a career-high 15 points and 11 rebounds.
"Quiera gave us a great effort tonight," said Boldon. "I'm proud of what she was able to do. She played a very good basketball game."
Redshirt sophomore guard Kat Yelle (Geneva, Ill.) scored 10 points, marking the third time in the last four games she has hit double digits. She also handed out a team-high four assists and hauled in seven rebounds.
Sophomore guard Kiyanna Black (Columbus, Ohio) pulled down seven rebounds. She also scored nine points. Freshman forward Destini Cooper (Reynoldsburg, Ohio) also tallied seven rebounds. Freshman forward Jasmine Weatherspoon (Columbus, Ohio) recorded a career-high six rebounds while freshman forward Hannah Boesinger (Hudson, Ohio) posted five rebounds.
The Bobcats jumped out of the gate to an 11-6 lead, forcing Cleveland State to burn a timeout with 16:41 to play in the first half courtesy of two layups by Lampkins, a three and a layup by Byard and a jumper by Cooper.
Ohio's lead swelled to 10 points with just over seven minutes left in the first half as the Bobcats outscored the Vikings, 15-10, over the ensuring nine minutes. The stretch was highlighted by two layups by Lampkins, layups by Boesinger and Yelle and jumpers by Black and sophomore forward Lexie Baldwin (Hattiesburg, Miss.).
It was all Cleveland State the remainder of the first half, though, as the Vikings went on a 17-5 tear to close the opening 20 minutes of play. Schmitt knocked down a three with just over two minutes to go to knot it up at 30-all, and junior guard Cori Coleman nailed another with just over a minute left to send Cleveland State into halftime holding a 33-31 edge.
Ohio opened the second half with an 8-4 run and regained the lead with 16:50 to play courtesy of a layup by Yelle.
The Vikings did not surrender, though, and built a nine-point advantage with 9:21 to play - their largest lead of the contest.
A three by Yelle and two more by Byard shaved Cleveland State's edge back to two with just over seven minutes to go.
That's as close as the Bobcats got, though, as the Vikings outscored the Bobcats, 16-6 down the final stretch.
Ohio returns home to Athens to host Notre Dame College next Saturday (Dec. 14) in its lone home game in the month of December. Tip time at the Convocation Center is scheduled for 11 a.m. EST.