The Skyhawks women’s basketball team was shut down Saturday, losing to the Belmont Bruins 58-56.
The Skyhawks won the tipoff and scored but after that it was a downhill run. They played very choppy ball. It was as if they had never played together before.
“This game was in Butler and Newsome’s hands and they didn’t make the shot. They were being he’d and the referees aren’t calling it,” said head coach Kevin McMillan.
The usual fast pace of the women’s game felt sluggish. Jasmine Newsome and Heather Butler couldn’t hit as many of their trademark 3-pointers. Rickiesha Bryant and Shelby Crawford, the tallest players on the team, were beat out for rebounds. And this was all in the first half.
There were good moments in the first half, though. At the end of the first, the score was 27-19 with UTM in the lead. Within ten minutes they had squandered away an eight-point lead. When Belmont took their first lead of the game, the Skyhawks kept within a five-point lead.
It was all for naught though. The Bruins went on a roll and extended their lead. The Skyhawks worked their tails off and tied the game with 21 seconds left on the clock. The Bruins got the ball and hit a field goal. Coach McMillan called a time out and tried to strategize a way to tie the game. Rickiesha Bryant missed a layup, ending the game with the 58-56 in favor of the Bruins.
The leading scorers of the game were Heather Butler and Jasmine Newsome with 25 points apiece. Butler had two rebounds and three assists. Newsome had six rebounds, four steals and three assists. The runner-up was Rickiesha Bryant with eight points, six rebounds, two steals and one assist.
The Skyhawks return to action against Southeast Missouri at Southest Missouri on Wednesday Jan. 16. Game time is slated for 6:30 p.m. To follow the game, follow UTM Athletics on Twitter, @UTMSports. The next home game will be against Morehead State on Saturday Jan. 19, at 4 p.m. To follow the game, follow The Pacer on Facebook and Twitter, @thepacer