Women’s basketball dominates Eastern Illinois; wins third in a row
The Southeast women's basketball team, led by sophomore guard Tesia Thompson’s 26 points, defeated Eastern Illinois on Saturday, Jan. 26, by a score of 72-57 at the Show Me Center.
Southeast coach Rekha Patterson’s game plan against the Panthers’ zone defense allowed for the Redhawks to control the paint, where they scored 34 of their 72 points.
“With the zone they play, it can be very easy to settle for 3s and to allow them to get deflections and steals,” Patterson said. “We wanted to be the aggressors by getting the ball to the short corner and the high post and looking to go high-low and inside-out against it.”
Although the final score does not reflect it, Eastern Illinois kept the game interesting. The Panthers took the lead early before going dry and falling behind and then rallying to tie in the third quarter. Southeast regained the lead pulled away for the win in the fourth quarter.
EIU (8-10 overall, 2-5 Ohio Valley Conference) started off hot, going on a 9-2 run in the first eight minutes behind 3-pointers from three different players. The Redhawks scored eight points to close out the quarter and take the lead 10-9.
The Redhawks run continued as they added eight more points to start the second quarter to go up 18-9. SEMO dominated the rest of the quarter as well, shooting 8 of 14 from the field and sinking 5 of 7 from the line.
The Panthers offense went dry for about 10 minutes of game time, not scoring a single point from the 5:29 mark in the first quarter until the 5:27 mark in the second.
The Redhawks potent offense was highlighted in the stat sheet, with junior forward Jocelyn Taylor scoring 11 points, Thompson netting 10 and redshirt-junior Carrie Shephard scoring nine points in the first half. SEMO would go into the half leading 34-26.
In the third quarter, Eastern Illinois made up ground at the charity stripe, going 9 of 11 while only committing four turnovers.
The Redhawks outrebounded the Panthers in the quarter 11-4 and had two blocks but Eastern Illinois managed to make their offense work. At one point, EIU pulled even on three made free throws by Taylor Steele with 6:08 left in the quarter. Southeast regained the lead on a basket by senior guard Adrianna Murphy with 5:49 left and took a 49-44 lead into the fourth quarter.
In the fourth quarter, Thompson scored 10 points, going 3-of-4 from the field and 4-of-5 from the line. She would finish with 26 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists. The Redhawks never looked back and extended their win streak to a season-high three games.
Three other Redhawks would finish with double figures, with Taylor getting 15, Shephard getting 11 and Murphy getting 10.
Eastern Illinois was led by Steele with 14 points and Jalisha Smith who grabbed 8 boards along with 9 points.
The Redhawks’ (10-9 overall, 5-3 OVC) next game is Jan. 31 at Belmont, where the Bruins are riding their own win streak of six games and are second in the OVC.