Salukis drained by late three; fall to Memphis 61-58

Salukis drained by late three; fall to Memphis 61-58

By Brent Meske, @brentmeskeDE

SIU women’s basketball (2-3) fell to Memphis (4-2) 61-58 Sunday afternoon after a late three-pointer by the Tigers.

The score was tied at 58 when Memphis coach Melissa McFerrin called a timeout with 17 seconds to play. Senior guard Ariel Hearn hit a three-pointer with 2.3 seconds remaining to seal the win for the Tigers.

SIU had an opportunity to tie the game, but junior point guard Rishonda Napier’s three-point attempt did not fall.

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Napier led all scorers with 16 and sophomore guard Kylie Giebelhausen had 15 including three three-pointers.

Hearn led the Tigers with 14 points. Memphis had three other starters with 10 or more points in the game.

It took 1:43 before senior forward Dyana Pierre scored the game’s first points with a jump shot. The game opened with five missed shots between the teams.

SIU built a 6-0 lead before Memphis got its first points from senior forward Brianna Wright, who hit a layup with 5:58 remaining in the first quarter.

Memphis junior guard Mooriah Rowser scored four straight to close out the quarter including a layup and two free throws.

The Salukis led 10-9 after 10 minutes.

Memphis took its first lead of the game, 12-10, after a Rowser three-pointer 55 seconds into the second quarter.

Senior forward Azia Washington tied the game with a layup 36 seconds later, her 800th point as a Saluki. Washington became the 32nd Saluki to reach 800 career points. It was Washington’s only points of the game. She finished with a season-high 23 minutes played.

Freshman guard Olivia Bowling hit her first career three-pointer with 3:10 remaining in the quarter, giving SIU a 20-19 lead.

Memphis regained the lead 17 seconds later when senior forward Asianna Fuqua-Bey hit a layup. She then closed the half with and two free throws, giving Memphis a 23-20 lead.

The second half started with a Fuqua-Bey layup 20 seconds into the third quarter.

Senior guard Cartashea Macklin, who would finish with seven points off the bench, sank a three-pointer with 3:58 to play in the third quarter, cutting the Memphis lead to 34-31. It was Macklin’s first shot attempt of the game.

The Salukis continued to battle back but the Tigers held the lead for the rest of the quarter, leading by as many as eight. Memphis led 44-38 with 10 minutes to play.

The starting five from last season — Napier, Macklin, Giebelhausen, Washington and Pierre — started the fourth quarter, the first time they’ve started a quarter together all season.

The Salukis closed the gap to 46-45 before a media timeout with 8:34 to play in the game.

A jump shot by Napier tied the game at 51 with 5:46 to play, marking the first time Memphis did not lead in the second half. Napier then converted a layup with 4:14 to play, giving SIU a 53-52 lead.

Memphis built a three point lead but Napier tied the game at 56 with a three-pointer with 2:40 remaining in the game. After Hearn added a jumper for the Tigers, Napier hit two free throws to tie the game at 58 with 1:11 to play.

The Salukis play Murray State (2-4) at 6 p.m. Wednesday in Murray, Ky.

Brent Meske can be reached at [email protected] or at 536-3333 

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