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FGCU (17-2, 8-0 A-Sun)
Lipscomb (3-15, 1-6 A-Sun)
1/14/2012 | Nashville, TN - Allen Arena | Attendance: 1570
Saturday, January 14, 2012
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Unable to overcome an offensive outburst in the second half by Florida Gulf Coast, the Lipscomb women’s basketball team fell 76-59 in Atlantic Sun Conference action on Saturday afternoon at Allen Arena.
The first half saw the Lady Bison (3-15, 1-6 A-Sun) battle the Eagles (17-2, 8-0 A-Sun), toe-to-toe as both teams dealt with a pair of starters in foul trouble after a combined 27 fouls were whistled in the opening frame. Playing with a high intensity level, the Lipscomb defense held the high-octane FGCU offense to 4-of-18 shooting beyond the arch. The Lady Bison also outrebounded the Eagles, who remain undefeated in A-Sun play, 23-21 in the opening stanza and outshot FGCU 38.5 percent to 35.5 percent in the first half.
FGCU led 32-19 with 3:56 to play but Lipscomb went on a 14-4 run to close the half out with a three-point basket by freshman wing Shanice Burnett with three seconds remaining making it a slim 36-33 lead for the Eagles. The Lady Bison were aided by 13 first-half points by senior guard Anna Bowers, who also added five rebounds for Lipscomb.
“We got down in the first half but in the last 10-12 minutes we really picked it up and played very well” said Lipscomb head coach Frank Bennett.
The Eagles first-half shooting woes from downtown evaporated in the second half as FGCU shot 48.3 percent from the floor and 50 percent from deep including six of their first eight three pointers. FGCU’s defense also picked up the pace and forced a number or turnovers early in the half that led to easy fast-break buckets and helped build a solid lead.
“Coming out of the half we were a little bit sluggish in meeting the ball and they raised their defensive level and got a few steals which converted into fast breaks,” said Bennett. “That got their confidence up and then our zone coverage was not quite as good on their shooters.”
FGCU also put a clamp down on Bowers in the second half allowing the veteran only one basket in the final twenty minutes. Bowers’ 15 points led all Lipscomb scorers and she just missed a double-double after grabbing nine rebounds. Sophomore post O’Neisha Smith added 10 points for the Lady Bison in extended action due to unavailability of freshman posts Sasha Robinson and Erika Thornsberry, who were out with foul trouble and a lower-body injury, respectively.
Turnovers plagued Lipscomb throughout the game as the Lady Bison gave the ball away 21 times. FGCU also won the rebounding battle 37-36 while the two teams both shot 41 percent from the floor. The Eagles also had a decided advantage from the charity stripe where FGCU made 13-of-17, while Lipscomb made 14-of-25.
The Lady Bison continue A-Sun action next weekend taking on ETSU in Johnson City at Noon.
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