Bowling Green State’s 3-point shooting buries Lady Toppers

Brad Stephens

Bowling Green State came into Tuesday night’s game against WKU shooting just 26 percent on 3-point attempts through four games.

That number took a boost in the first half.

The Falcons hit 10-of-11 3-pointers in the game’s first 20 minutes, putting the Lady Toppers away early en route to an 86-62 win at the Stroh Center in Bowling Green, Ohio.

WKU (1-6) trailed in the first half by as many as 31 points.

“There were probably three of those shots that we had a hand in their face, and it was as contested as we possibly could’ve contested it,” Head Coach Mary Taylor Cowles told WKU’s Big Red Radio Network. “They were in a zone.”

Guard Jillian Halfhill led the Falcons’ 3-point onslaught by connecting on all five of her attempts from behind the arc.

Guard Chrissy Steffen chipped in with three treys and finished with a game-high 24 points.

It was a similar story to the Lady Toppers loss last Tuesday to Wright State, in which the Raiders connected on 9-of-15 second-half 3-pointers.

“Defensively we’ve got to get better,” Cowles said.

WKU’s turnover problems also reared their heads Tuesday. The Lady Toppers turned the ball over 22 times against the Falcons.

“We didn’t take care of the ball, and some of those were sloppy passes we made that landed right in their hands,” Cowles said.

The Falcons started the hot shooting early, getting back-to-back 3s from Halfhill and forward Alexis Rogers to give BGSU a 19-9 lead.

Then after WKU cut the lead to seven, the Falcons launched a 9-0 run that stretched their lead to 28-12.

The Lady Toppers didn’t draw within 14 points the rest of the way.

BGSU finished off the first half with a 13-2 run to go into the half with a 60-29 lead.

The Falcons’ largest lead of the game came after guard Deborah Hoekstra converted a three-point play to put her team up 74-36.

WKU was able to close the game on a 14-2 run to make the final score 86-62.

If there was a bright spot for the Lady Toppers, it was their 49-30 rebounding advantage.

WKU was led on the glass by senior forward Keshia Mosley, who pulled down a career-high 16 rebounds to go with her team-high 12 points.

Mosley’s double-double numbers far surpassed her 5.5 points and 4.7 rebounds per game average coming into Tuesday.

“We had a young lady at halftime named Keshia Mosley that was mad,” Cowles said. “She was mad — mad because she wasn’t playing well, mad because because she’s not been playing much.

“She went out tonight and played the way we all knew she was capable of playing… She was just flat mad and decided to do something about it. They didn’t have an answer for her.”

Senior forward LaTeira Owens, senior guard Vanessa Obafemi and freshman guard Alexis Govan all scored eight points in the loss.

After playing five games in nine days, the Lady Toppers have six days before their next game, a home date next Monday with rival Louisiana Tech.

They’ll be looking to avoid their first-ever 1-7 start.

“With 21 games left in our season, there’s no reason to not step up and play with an attitude,” Cowles said. “We’ve got a lot of basketball season left.”