Flames split on the road against Tigers

From LEE SPORTS INFORMATION

Posted 1/11/18

LIVINGSTON, Ala. — The Lee University women’s basketball team ran its winning streak to four with a 66-57 defeat of the University of West Alabama Wednesday evening at Pruitt Hall. The Lady …

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Flames split on the road against Tigers

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LIVINGSTON, Ala. — The Lee University women’s basketball team ran its winning streak to four with a 66-57 defeat of the University of West Alabama Wednesday evening at Pruitt Hall.

The Lady Flames (13-3, 6-2 GSC) held a 63-48 lead with 2:35 remaining and had to fight off a strong West Alabama (6-9, 3-5 GSC) comeback attempt. Lee’s scoring over the final 2:49 of the game came courtesy of a free throw by Maddie Long and two freebies by Abby Bertram.

“This was one of those games where we weren’t all that good and we weren’t all that bad either, but we needed more energy and consistency,” said Lee head coach Marty Rowe. “Our rhythm substituting wasn’t very good because of the foul situation.”

The Lady Flames were called for 26 fouls, while the hosts were whistled for 13 transgressions. As a result, West Alabama went to the free throw line 29 times, although the Tigers made just 17 Lee was 8 for 13 at the charity stripe.

UWA won the battle of the boards 40-37 and grabbed 15 offensive boards to Lee’s 13. Both teams cashed in for 16 second-chance points.

Carrie Cheeks led Lee with seven rebounds, including five on the offensive end. Lindsey Roddy and Long grabbed five rebounds each.

“We couldn’t seem to get a big rebound when we needed it, especially when Carrie was out,” lamented Rowe.

Cheeks also was the Lady Flames’ leading scorer. The senior made 8-of-11 shots and finished with 17 points. Roddy was 6 for 8 on her way to 14 markers and Erin Walsh made four 3-pointers to record 12 points.

Long completed a well-rounded game with eight points, five rebounds, five steals and two assists. Bertram tallied seven points to go along with two rebounds, two steals and a game-high six assists.

Overall, the Lady Flames were 25 of 62 from the field and made 8 of 24  attempts from behind the arc. UWA was 19-for-50 from the floor and just 2-of-11  from long distance.

The Lady Flames return home on Saturday to host Shorter University at 5 p.m. in Paul Dana Walker Arena. A white out has been called for with T-shirts to be handed out to the first 500 fans in attendance. As an extra treat, the Air Elite Dunkers with be performing at halftime of both the women’s and men’s games.

Admission is $5 for adults and $2 for children.

“Hopefully, we’ll be ready on Saturday,” added Rowe. “Shorter will be hungry. They aren’t the same team we saw earlier in the season. They have won two straight (at West Alabama and at Montevallo), so they’re feeling good about themselves. Shorter wants to make you play how they want you to. We cannot get caught up in that.”

 Late Tigers run
too much for Lee

LIVINGSTON, Ala. — Thanks to a 10-4 run over the final 3:44 the West Alabama Tigers completed a double-digit second half comeback over the Lee men's basketball team with a 62-56 victory on Wednesday night.

The Flames led by as many as 10, 42-32, after a Michael McGuirk layup with 12:33 left in the contest but were unable to put away the never-say-die Tigers.

McGuirk finished with 12 points, all coming in the second half. Chase Cullen turned in a double-double performance off the bench with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Parker Sudekum chipped in nine points on a perfect 3 for 3 from beyond the arc and dished off three assists while Jason Landman added five points and five rebounds.

The Tigers were led by GSC-leading scorer Charles Eaton who tallied a game-high 24 points. Eaton is averaging 28.6 points per game this season.

Josh Fleming (11 points) and DeAndre Harper (10 points) joined Eaton in double-figures for the home team. Dominque Alexander made life difficult on the Flames as he patrolled the paint with 10 rebounds and five blocks.

Turnovers helped spark the Tigers comeback effort. Lee finished with 25 floor mistakes while turning over UWA just 12 times. The Tigers turned those 25 miscues into 23 points.

"We gave them the ball too much, same thing against Montevallo, you can't turn the ball over that many times and when close games on the road. We have to learn from this and we have to grow up. We can't keep using the excuse were young. You eventually have to learn how to finish and take care of the basketball," said head coach Bubba Smith.

The Flames won the rebounding battle 34-29 and allowed the Tigers to shoot just 37.3 percent from the field. Lee is currently first in the GSC allowing opponents to shoot just 39.5 percent from the field on average.

"Defensively we did a nice job tonight and we covered Eaton well and contained him but at the end of the day if we don't take better care of the ball we will continue to come up on the short end in these close ballgames. Our guys are hungry and they'll be ready to bounce back Saturday but we've got to start putting together consistent efforts from start to finish to get the results we want," concluded Smith.

West Alabama held a commanding advantage at the foul line as they journeyed to the charity stripe 27 times and converted 19. The Flames did not attempt a first half foul shot and went 4 of 5 in the second half. For the contest Lee canned 22 of 49 from the field and 8 of 20 from the 3-point line.

The Flames are now 1-3 in 2018 but each game has either gone to overtime over been decided by six or less points. Lee is now 9-6 overall and an even 4-4 in league play while West Alabama improves to 11-5 and 5-3 in the GSC.

Coach Smith's club will now gear up for a big rivalry showdown with Shorter University on Saturday evening in Walker Arena. Opening tip is set for 7 p.m.

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