A close game between the Lady Bisons and Florida Gulf Coast Wednesday night turned into the biggest Lipscomb loss of the women’s season.
The Eagles won 101-59 in both teams’ final regular-season game. This was not how anyone expected the Lady Bisons’ final game of the season to go. FGCU (29-3, 17-1 in the ASUN) is No. 24 in the nation and enter the postseason first in the ASUN. The Lady Bisons (19-11, 13-5) are seeded third in the conference and have a first-round bye in the ASUN championship.
The Lady Bisons led the Eagles 25-20 by the end of the first quarter, but the Eagles would rally back tremendously to end the game almost double on the Bisons.
Senior guard Blythe Pearson started the game off strong with a three-point shot for the Lady Bisons, putting the first points on the board for either team.
The game continued with the ball trading back and forth, but the Lady Bisons were strong on defense, keeping the Eagles from putting up more than one point in the first minutes of the game. Meanwhile the Lady Bisons were strong on scoring, putting up ten points to the Eagles’ one.
Pearson picked up another three-point shot, carrying on the Lady Bisons’ momentum. The Eagles had advanced their score to six, but the Lady Bisons took their own score up as well.
Five minutes into the first quarter, the score was 15-11 in the Lady Bisons’ favor.
Pearson put up her third three-point shot of the game in only the first quarter, and later sophomore transfer guard Claira McGowan added a three of her own, continuing the energy of the game.
With one minute left in the first quarter, the Eagles began to close the gap, redshirt junior Brylee Bartram sinking a three-point shot to take the score to 23-20 in the Bisons’ favor.
Redshirt sophomore transfer forward Aleah Sorrentino made a shot in the last six seconds of the first to add two points to the Lady Bisons’ lead.
Freshman guard Molly Heard started the second quarter off strong with a two-point layup, continuing to add insurance to the Lady Bisons’ lead. However the Eagles rallied back with a three-point shot and three layups to take the score to 27-29 in the Eagles’ favor.
The Eagles continued to rally, taking their lead higher. The Lady Bisons chased the Eagles, making baskets to counter theirs, but the Eagles held their lead.
Despite the Lady Bisons strong first quarter, the second ended with the Eagles holding the lead, 35-49.
The Eagles got the first shot of the second half, fifth-year guard Tishara Morehouse putting up a three-point jump shot in the first nine seconds of the third quarter. The Eagles followed with two layups, taking the score to 35-56 before the Lady Bisons called a timeout.
Pearson put the Lady Bisons back on the board with a layup, followed by one free throw. She followed this with a two-point jump shot.
The Lady Bisons began to struggle to accurately find the basket, hitting a scoring lull in the back half of the third quarter. The Eagles had no such issue, raising their lead to 33 points.
The third quarter ended with the Lady Bisons trailing 74-41.
Though the Lady Bisons were still struggling to find the net, they proved the strength of their defense, allowing the Eagles to make only three points in the first two minutes of the fourth quarter.
Sorrentino put up two free throws in the fourth, putting the Lady Bisons back on the board after their lull.
The Lady Bisons began a turnaround rally in the back half of the fourth, reinvigorated by Sorrentino’s free throws. Sorrentino continued with ten more points for the Lady Bisons. McGowan followed with a three-point shot, building off of Sorrentino’s considerable momentum.
Heard finished out the game with a three-point shot in the very last second.
The Lady Bisons will play their next game in the ASUN championship on Sunday in the quarterfinals against sixth-seeded North Alabama.