Panthers beat 2nd-place Redhawks 51-49

Adam Tumino, Editor-in-Chief

The Eastern women’s basketball team, once again missing one of its leading scorers, faced the top defensive team in the OVC Saturday on the road when they faced Southeast Missouri.

It was predictably a low-scoring game, but the Panthers were able to outlast the Redhawks to pick up a 51-49 win, despite leading the game for just 32 seconds.

It was the first time that the Panthers beat the Redhawks since Jan. 21, 2017.

Eastern is now 6-6 in OVC play and in seventh place while Southeast Missouri falls to 7-3 and is now tied for second place in the conference with Austin Peay.

Both teams struggled from the field, each shooting just under 31 percent from the field for the game. Eastern went 4-of-21 from three-point range, but actually outperformed Southeast Missouri. The Redhawks went 0-of-12 from beyond the arc.

Eastern’s offensive troubles could in part be attributed to the absence of senior guard and the team’s second-leading scorer Karle Pace, who missed her second-straight game with injury.

The team’s leading scorer, junior forward Abby Wahl, had her lowest-scoring game of the season. Wahl scored just 3 points on 1-of-11 shooting.

It was only her third game of the season where she did not score in double figures.

With the absence of Pace and the struggles of Wahl, sophomore Lariah Washington and junior Kira Arthofer provided more scoring than they have at any point this season.

Washington scored a season-high 24 points to lead the team while shooting 6-of-13 from the field.

Washington also went 10-of-10 from the free throw line while the rest of the team went a combined 3-of-9. She also led the team with 7 rebounds. 

Arthofer scored a career-high 15 points including a jump shot that out the Panthers ahead with 16 seconds left in the game, a shot that proved to be the game-winner.

She shot 7-of-11 from the field and also collected 4 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals.

Southeast Missouri’s leading scorer, senior guard Tesia Thompson, struggled from the field but still led the team in scoring.

Thompson, who is also the second-leading scorer in the OVC, scored 17 points on 4-of-15 shooting. She picked up a majority of her points at the free-throw line, where she shot 9-of-10 in the game.

She also had a game-high 12 rebounds to record her third double-double of the season.

Eastern will be back on its home floor Thursday and Saturday for games against Belmont and Tennessee State.

The game against Belmont will tip off at 4:30 p.m. The Bruins are in fourth place in the OVC with a conference record of 4-2.

Eastern and Tennessee State will start at 1 p.m. Saturday. The Tigers are the only winless team in the OVC this season with an 0-10 conference record and an overall record of 0-12.


Adam Tumino can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]