Murray State beats Eastern women 92-74

Mark Shanahan, Basketball Reporter

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The Eastern women’s basketball team committed 20 turnovers in a 92-74 loss to Murray State on Wednesday afternoon.

With the loss, Eastern drops to 5-12 on the season with a 1-4 record against the Ohio Valley Conference.

Murray State is now 11-6 overall with a 3-1 record in conference.

Eastern had four players reach double digit scoring in the game, led by freshman Allison Van Dyke who scored a team high 16 points along with five rebounds.

Junior Grace Lennox (15), senior Erica Brown (14) and freshman Jennifer Nehls (13) were the other Panthers to reach double figures for the Panthers.

Eastern coach Debbie Black said the four players reaching double figures shows that this team has a number of weapons.

“I like the fact that we almost had five players in double figures. I think we have a well-rounded team when that happens, that’s a better stat line for us,” she said. “It just shows you that we have a number of weapons and I also think we executed a number of things well, got offensive rebounds, but we didn’t finish.”

Eastern outrebounded Murray State 40-34 in the game, but was haunted by the 20 turnovers, which resulted in 29 points for the Racers.

Black said the turnovers come in waves, and once one happens it is followed up by more.

She said these could be cut down if they make “smarter” turnovers.

“We work on a lot of different things,” Black said. “Ball faking, making smaller, shorter passes and I just think it’s a matter of working on making good turnovers or bad turnovers. If you throw the ball out of bounds, they can’t get a layup out of it.”

Murray State’s offense was powered by LeAsia Wright and Ke’Shunan James, who each scored over 20 points.

Wright was 4-for-9 from beyond the arc and finished with 24 points along with four steals.

James had 23 points along with nine assists.

Black admitted the duo played well, but turnovers were giving Murray State easy points going the other way.

“They hit some critical 3’s,” Black said. “They probably have one of the best players in the league in James. We broke down a little bit and gave up some easy buckets off of the turnovers.”

The Panthers left some points on the board at the free throw line where they 7-for-13 in the first half and finished going 17-for-27 in the game.

Nehls and Brown both contributed to the rebounded performance with seven each.

Eastern will return home to Lantz Arena this Saturday to host Austin Peay for the start of a two-game home stand.

Mark Shanahan can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].