The University of Texas at Tyler (10-7, 7-5 ASC) chopped a seventeen-point lead down to two, but could not catch ASC East-leading East Texas Baptist Saturday, and fell 90-82.
The Patriots trailed by a dozen at halftime, but rallied on the shooting of Sarah Stanley (SR/Rockwall, TX) and the strength of a strong interior game, with Sha Shead (SR/LaRue, TX) scoring seventeen and LaKeisha Grant (SR/Marshall, TX) throwing in nineteen points, all in the second half.
“Our idea was to go inside as much as we could,” Coach Terri Deike said, “and Sha did a good job inside. We needed more help inside and Keisha did a good job, too. I told them it was going to come down to rebounds, and we got beaten there.”
In spite of Shead’s game high nine rebounds, the Patriots were outboarded 40-35. ETBU also bombed away from outside, hitting on 8-of-13 from three-point range.
“We just didn’t do a good enough job defending the three, that’s what it comes down to,” Deike said. “Anytime you let a team make eight three’s, then it’s going to be difficult to win.”
“We didn’t defend the three well, and we really only have one person who could shoot it.”
Sarah Stanley only made one of five from the arc tonight, still finishing with a game-high twenty-six points.
The Patriots rallied in the second half, buoyed by the inside play of Grant. LaKeisha hit ten straight Patriot points in a row, all in a 1:41 stretch of time.
“I was proud of our ability to come back,” Deike said. “That’s not enough though, you have to be able to come back and win. The whole thing comes down to not getting that far behind.”
“Against a bad team, you can get down and come back. Against a great team like they are, you can’t get thirteen points down.”
ASC East Division Player of the Week RaTonya Hunter (SR/Athens, TX) played nearly the entire game and finished with eight points and six assists.
The Patriots now fall 2 ½ games behind ETBU in the ASC East. UT Tyler is in action next on the road against UT Dallas Monday night at 7:30. That game will be live on the UT Tyler Sports Network.