Lipscomb post player Katie Beth Pate recorded her third double-double of the season grabbing 12 rebounds and scoring 12 points in an 80-76 loss at Belmont's Curb Center Tuesday night.
" Belmont plays well on their home court and they played well in this game," said Lipscomb coach Frank Bennett. "We have been in loss recently that have all gone down to the last minute. At the start of the season we were winning a lot of those. Right now we are coming up a little bit short."
The Lady Bisons placed five players in double figures. Dana Carrigan led with 15, equaling her season high against Kent State earlier this season, and Courtney Boynton, Julie Martin and Penny Jones each added 11 points.
"Dana is a player who can really shoot the three from almost anywhere on the court," Bennett said. "She gave us a spark. It isn't a surprise the way she shoots the 3-point shot. She was 50 percent in this game."
Belmont jumped out to a quick early lead at 9-2 with15:25 left in the first half. The Lady Bisons rallied with a 7-0 run to tie the game at 9-9 at 12:57 .
The Lady Bisons took a lead at 12-11 at the 12-minute mark on a 3-pointer by Carrigan. Belmont would regain the lead at8:27 on a lay-up by Brandi Miller to make it 15-14. The two teams swapped leads until the Lady Bisons up 30-28 at 3:12 on a lay-up by Penny Jones.
The two teams were tied at 30-30 at 2:58 , but Belmont outscored the Lady Bisons 9-5 the rest of the way to take a 41-35 lead at intermission.
Belmont continued to hold the advantage in the second half, leading by 11 (52-41) at 15:42.The Lady Bisons refused to go away, cutting the lead to one on two different occasions.
With 7:34 left to play Kaleigh Gossman hit a pair of free throws for the Lady Bisons to cut the lead to 64-63. At 5:13 Carrigan's 3-pointer brought the Lady Bisons within one again at 67-66. But that would be as close as they would get.
Belmont closed out the game with an 13-10 scoring edge as the Lady Bisons failed to capitalize on several opportunities at the free throw line.
"We missed a lot of free throws which would have given us the chance to put ourselves closer or get even with them," Bennett said. "There were wasted possessions throughout the game where we would force a pass or take a bad shot. We can control those things a little better than what we are doing."
Julie Martin kept the game interesting with two seconds left as she hit a jumper for the Lady Bisons from deep in 3-point territory to cut the lead to 78-76. But Belmont 's Hollie Davis hit a pair of free throws with less than one second left to play to ice the victory.
Belmont's Brandi Miller tied with Carrigan for the game-lead in scoring with 15. Jenny Conkle finished with 14 followed by Brooke Sunday with 12 and Davis with 11.
"We talked about what stopped us from getting over the hump and being successful...things like them getting second shots and second opportunities on the boards," Bennett said. "That hurt us a lot when the game was on the line."
Belmont also beat the Lady Bisons on the boards by a 46-43 margin. Both teams had 20 rebounds in the first half.
"In the second half we were getting stops on the first shot, but they were getting the ball back for the second and third shot," Bennett said. "We have to do a better job of blocking out. On given nights we rebound very well. We have to really have a team effort and focus on that. When we rely on Katie Beth and Penny is when we get in trouble."
The Lady Bisons split with Belmont in regular season games this season.
The Lady Bisons are 10-7 overall, 7-4 in the A-Sun. Belmont is 10-8, 5-6 in the conference.