Ladies Fight, but Fall in End
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
MACOMB, Ill.-The Centenary women's basketball team played a much improved game, but in the end, couldn't hang onto its early lead, falling 63-47 to Western Illinois on Monday evening in Summit League play.

The Ladies (1-18, 0-8) came out strong, but was challenged by the Fighting Leathernecks' (6-12, 2-5 Summit) offense in the second half, dropping its eighth straight league contest. Junior Ashley Jackson and senior Bethany Joseph each led with 15 points.

Western Illinois took an early 4-0 lead, but Centenary's Stephanie Barrow drained a three to put the Ladies on board. Jackson's lay up at the 16:17 mark tied the game at 6-6.

The Fighting Leathernecks held a lead until Centenary put together a 9-2 run to go up 15-14 with 9:45 to play.

It remained a one-point game for much of the half, though Western Illinois took over the Ladies' tilt after back-to-back lay ups at 22-21 with 4:10 remaining.

To finish off the half, the Fighting Leathernecks put together a 5-0 to go up by six (30-24) before Joseph sank a three with three seconds on the clock to head into halftime, trailing by just three (30-27).

Western Illinois hit a three and later went ahead by as many as eight (36-28), though a Megan Daniel's three and a free throw by junior Anne Farrell narrowed the score to five (37-32) with 14:40 to play.

The Fighting Leathernecks capitalized on several offensive opportunities, stringing together a 13-0 run. Midway through the final 20 minutes, the Ladies saw themselves down 49-33.

Joseph scored eight points for Centenary on two treys and a jumper within a six-minute time span, however, Western Illinois wouldn't allow the Ladies to trim their lead much more, leading 59-45 with just under three minutes remaining.

An 8-1 finale run ended in the Fighting Leathernecks' favor, dropping the Ladies 63-47.

Centenary, as a team, shot 29 percent (15-52) from the floor including seven made three-pointers. The Ladies made 10-of-12 from the charity stripe for 83 percent.

Western Illinois shot 49 percent (26-53) from the field, led by Erica Lewis with 15 points and Ashley Lord with 14 points.

The Ladies were out rebounded, 40-31. Jackson, Farrell and senior Natasha Draganic pulled down six boards apiece, while Jackie Barton had a game-best seven boards for the Fighting Leathernecks.

Centenary will return to action on Saturday when it hosts Oral Roberts at 5:00 pm in the Gold Dome.