Southeast Missouri State used a 28-7 run to start the second half and then held off Southern Illinois University Edwardsville women’s basketball 79-71 at the Show Me Center in Cape Girardeau, Mo.
“Offensively, we stalled a little bit, and our defense just didn’t hold steady,” said SIUE Head Coach Paula Buscher.
The Cougars dropped to 5-16 overall and 2-7 in the Ohio Valley Conference. SIUE will look to rebound Saturday with a 4:15 p.m. road contest at Eastern Illinois.
“Every game is big for us at this point in time,” said Buscher. “We’ve got to get back on track. I feel like we are working hard, but we’re having lapses.”
In the first half, the game was tied nine times and there were six lead changes.
CoCo Moore scored 12 points in the first half and helped SIUE hold a three-point lead by halftime 33-30. The Cougars held Southeast to 34.6 percent (9-26) shooting in the opening frame, including 1 of 11 from 3-point range.
“I thought in the first half, offensively, we were scoring,” said Buscher. “We were running when we needed to run, and we hit shots.”
Southeast’s 3-pointers were a difference-maker in the second half. The Redhawks, 7-11 overall and 3-4 in the OVC, turned their shooting woes around by hitting 7 of 10 from beyond the arc. Southeast hit 55.6 percent (15-27) during the final 20 minutes.
The Redhawks opened the half by hitting their first three shots and six of their first eight. Allyson Bradshaw hit the first of three straight 3-pointers with 15:24 to play as the Redhawks sprinted to as much as a 21-point lead in the second half.
“Our defense just couldn’t contain them,” said Buscher.
Six different players for Southeast hit a 3-pointer, and five players scored in double figures. Olivia Hackmann led the Redhawks with 17 points. Connor King, who hit both of her 3-point attempts, finished with 13. Patricia Mack scored 12 while Bradshaw and Kara Wright each finished with 10.
Moore, Micah Jones, and Miranda Brandt each finished with a team-high 14 points for the Cougars. For Brandt, it was a season high in scoring for the second straight game.
“She has to continue to look to score,” Buscher said of Brandt.
Tierny Austin and Jessie Wendt added 12 and 10 points, respectively, for the Cougars.