Eastern falls short at Omaha

Elias Albert, Staff Reporter

The Eastern women’s basketball team fell short on the road to now 6-2 Omaha by a final score of 76-67.

With the loss, Eastern is now 1-7 and adds to their losing streak, which now stands at seven.

Coach Debbie Black said she liked what she saw out of her team but they could not close the gap when they needed to.

“We did a lot of good things tonight,” Black said. “We just couldn’t close it out. We fell behind and had to battle our way back.”

Eastern kept the game close throughout, even matching Omaha’s point total in the second and third quarters.

Though the Panthers’ only lead came halfway through the first quarter, they answered Omaha’s baskets on numerous occasions to keep themselves within striking distance.

Defensively, Eastern allowed Omaha junior forward Mikaela Shaw to score 31, which was 20 points more than any other Omaha player.

Coming into the game, Black said Shaw was a good player and it would take extra effort to slow her down.

Despite allowing Shaw to score so many, Eastern allowed one other Omaha player to breach double figures.

Black said she was happy with her team’s effort and energy despite coming up short in the end.

“Our team showed more effort on the rebounding side today,” Black said. “We still allowed too many offensive rebounds though.”

Omaha was held to 41.3 percent from the field and 30 rebounds, compared to Eastern’s 48.2 percent and 36 rebounds.

However, Eastern was only able to convert six free throws to Omaha’s 17.

Eastern’s scoring efforts were led by junior forward Erica Brown and freshman forward Halle Stull, who each recorded 14 points.

Brown and Stull were also the top-two in Eastern’s rebounding performance, posting 11 and 7 rebounds, respectively.

Despite having foul trouble entering the contest, Brown recorded 36 minutes. Stull matched Brown’s minutes with 36 of her own.

Sophomore forward Grace Lennox bounced back with eight points and four assists following her last two games where she averaged just one point per game.

Freshman guard Kayla Steward posted eight points off 3-9 shooting. She was fresh off a team-leading 18-point effort against Western Illinois.

Freshman forward Karina Chandra scored eight points off 32 minutes of action in the first start of her career.

Chandra came into the game having only scored a total of nine points and 28 total minutes the whole season.

Black said Chandra responded well in her first start and made an impact on the game.

“She (Chandra) played well,” Black said. “She did what we asked her to do even though she really hadn’t seen much action coming into this game.”

Senior guard Shakita Cox scored nine points and hit a three.

Unlike their previous six losses, Eastern kept the final result to single digits.

The Panthers will have their next chance to get back on the winning side of the scoreboard on Thursday as they host 3-3 Milwaukee at 6 p.m.


Elias Albert can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]