Shooting woes plagued the EMU basketball women Saturday afternoon in a 57-52 loss to visiting Ferrum College. The Panthers earned a win in their first-ever women's basketball game in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference, after the school joined the ODAC this summer.
Eastern Mennonite (1-4, 0-1 ODAC) made just 2-of-23 three point attempts, and shot a season-low 32.8% from the floor in dropping their fourth straight game. All of the losses have been by seven points or less.
The Royals hope to break that streak on Wednesday when they host Virginia Wesleyan. Game time in Yoder Arena is at 7:00pm.
EMU scored first against Ferrum (3-2, 1-0 ODAC) before falling in a 7-2 hole. Emily McCombs (Culpeper, Va./Eastern View) hit a triple early in the second to tie the score at 16-16. That, however, would be the final three the women would hit, as they missed their final 17 attempts.
The score was still tied at 22-22 until Ferrum ended the half on a 9-2 run, taking a 31-24 lead at the break.
After two empty offensive possessions and a Ferrum lay-up, Coach Jenny Logan made a full line change, triggering a comeback. Precious Waddy (Richmond, Va./Henrico) hit a jumper on the next possession and women quickly got within five points.
A big three-point play from Jess Washington (Chesapeake, Va./Great Bridge) closed the margin to one at 35-34 at the 4:11 mark of the third, before a jumper from McCombs finally bumped the Royals in front, 36-35.
The teams traded one-point leads into the fourth period until the Panthers regained a slighter margin at 44-41. Back-to-back buckets bumped the FC lead to 51-44 with 3:51 to go.
Eastern Mennonite did not fold, however, scoring six in a row to get within 51-50 on a Lexi Dean (Elkton, Va./East Rockingham) lay-in with 2:19 remaining.
Ferrum regained momentum just as quickly, however, scoring five unanswered to go up 56-50 into the final minute. On EMU's next three possessions, they missed a shot and went just 1-for-4 from the free throw line.
The Panthers put the margin back at six hitting a single free throw with 13 seconds left, and the Royals couldn't connect on a big shot to make a late comeback.
Eastern Mennonite seemed affected by the cold and rainy weather outside, making just 19-of-58 shots in the game. The women have yet to shoot better than 38.1% in the Jenny Logan-era. Ferrum only made 20-of-49 attempts for 40.8%, but forged the biggest difference by going 7-16 from three-point range.
EMU grabbed 14 offensive rebounds for a 40-37 overall margin. They also held a +4 turnover margin.
McCombs had a team high 11 points while Washington came in with nine points and nine rebounds. Lindsey Krisak (Alexandria, Va./Thomas A. Edison) scored eight.
Waddy and Dean led the second unit. Dean made a huge presence inside, going for eight rebounds, seven points and five blocked shots. Waddy scored nine points.
Arin Bunker had 16 points and six rebounds to lead Ferrum. Jessy Nichols added 11 points, three assists and three steals.