Salukis take another step backwards with loss

By Gus Bode

Normally cats flee from dogs. This time, however, bragging rights go to the cats who succeeded by holding their ground during the second half of the game.

The Salukis (2-4), with freshman guard Cartaesha Macklin leading the way with 20 points, continued into a two-game losing streak as they fell short in overtime against the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Cougars (4-2) 70-60 Saturday at the SIU Arena.

SIUC was unable to contain its two-point lead against the Cougars at the end of regulation, when SIUE’s junior center Raven Berry grabbed an offensive rebound and scored as time expired to force overtime. The Cougars dominated the game with a 47-35 rebounding advantage and 20 offensive boards.

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Coach Missy Tiber reacts to a play in Saturday’s game against Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville at the SIU Arena. The SIUE Cougars scored a buzzer-tying basket to lead the game into overtime. Salukis scored five baskets in overtime, but lost to the Cougars in a 60-70 final score. Nathan Hoefert | Daily Egyptian

Head coach Missy Tiber said the team needs to improve and perfect its rebounding in order to come out on top.

“I thought our defense in the second half was pretty solid, but we cannot rebound the basketball to save our life,” Tiber said. “One possession under two minutes we gave (SIUE) five shots at and they luckily turned it over.”

The Cougars were led by their guards, sophomore Jazmin Hill and freshman Katie Hempen. Hill finished with 12 points, while Hempen added 11.

With the exception of junior guard Teri Oliver, the team’s leading scorer with 12 points, three Saluki starters — freshman forward Ariel Haynes, sophomore point guard Brooke LeMar and senior forward Charnise Mitchell — shot 4-for-13 in field goals and accounted for only 12 points.

Tiber said additional players must contribute and consistently perform well to win games.

“Obviously we need more scoring, but we need to rebound,” Tiber said. “We’re an up-tempo team, not a half-court team. We don’t have back-to-the-basket type players right now, and if we don’t rebound we cannot run.”

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Macklin said the team’s biggest downfall is learning how to close games and come out with a victory.

“I feel we are playing timid,” Macklin said. “We’ve got to learn how to finish. We’re young and have to learn how to build momentum for ourselves.”

Oliver said overtime was the biggest turning point for the team, but it just couldn’t pull away with the win.

“They had a 5-0 run in overtime after hitting a buzzer-beater,” Oliver said. “It’s all about momentum, really.”

The Salukis will play host to Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis Thursday before a five-game road trip, with tip-off set for 7:05 p.m. at the SIU Arena.

 

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