Redhawks Continue to Soar; Defeat Panthers, 71-56
Feb. 8, 2005
CHARLESTON, Ill. - (Tuesday, February 08, 2005) Redhawks Head Coach B.J. Smith had warned his team about Eastern Illinois after their victory over Murray State on Saturday. Despite being last in the Ohio Valley Conference standings and owning an eight-game winning streak over the Panthers, the Redhawks knew that the Panthers had played well at home.
The Redhawks (16-6, 10-1 OVC) had to come from behind to beat a scrappy Panthers (9-13, 2-9 OVC) team on the road, 71-56 Tuesday night. The win extended their current winning streak to nine games and gave them a sweep of their three-game road trip.
The Panthers held the lead for most of the first half. The used a 10-0 run to grab their biggest lead of the game, 17-8. The nine-point lead is the largest deficit that the Redhawks had seen during their nine-game winning streak.
The Redhawks battled back to grab only their second lead of the first half when they pulled ahead 31-27 with 1:41 left in the first.
The Panthers later tied in on a Pam O'Connor lay-up with :24 seconds left. Tiffanne Ryan (Oklahoma City, OK/Westmoore) had her three-point shot blocked and Simone Jackson (Kingston, Jamaica/Southeastern Illinois CC) failed to convert a lay-up off the miss as the buzzer went off and sent both teams into the lockeroom deadlocked at 31 points apiece.
It was the first time since their game against Southwest Missouri State on December 22 that the Redhawks had not led at halftime.
The second half was a different story as the Redhawks used timely three's and runs to stop the Panther's momentum.
After Katrisha Dunn (Dallas, TX/Eastern Oklahoma State College) made a three-pointer to give the Redhawks a four-point lead, 48-44, Tatiana Conceicao (Sao Paulo, Brazil/Western Nebraska CC) picked-up her fourth foul of the game at the 12:15 mark.
With the OVC's leading scorer sitting down because of foul trouble, the Panthers made a run and grabbed their first lead of the second-half, 50-48 on an O'Connor lay-up.
Coach Smith called a quick timeout to try to stop the momentum the Panthers had and to reassure his team that he believed in them and their ability to play from behind.
The Redhawks responded with a 14-0 run highlighted by three-pointers by Dunn and Natalie Purcell (Auckland, New Zealand/Hutchinson CC).
The Redhawks never looked back as the Panthers reverted back to the team that Southeast had beaten back on January 11.
The Panthers committed costly turnovers brought upon by the Southeast defensive pressure and Southeast milked the clock and shot free-throws the final 2:11 to win by 15 points, 71-56.
Conceicao recorded game highs of 26 points and 10 rebounds in only 25 minutes of play for her second-straight double-double and third of the season. She was 10-14 from the field and tied her career-high with 10 rebounds (5 offensive).
Jackson recorded her fourth-straight double-digit scoring outburst with 13 points. She collected five rebounds all of which were on the offensive end. She also swiped a career-high four passes.
Purcell came off the bench to score nine points on 3-7 shooting, all from behind the arc.
The final stats mirrored those of their last match-up on January 11. The Panthers once again out-shot the Redhawks from a percentage standpoint, 52-percent to 46-percent. But southeast once again won the by forcing turnovers (26 turnovers) and by out-rebounding the Panthers.
Southeast finished with 35 boards to the Panthers 21, however over half of Southeast's boards (18) were on the offensive end as Eastern Illinois only managed three offensive boards.
The Panthers were the first team to shoot over 36-percent in seven games against the Redhawks.
O'Connor led three Panthers in double-figures with 17 points.
With Eastern Kentucky off, Southeast grabbed sole possession of first place in the OVC standings with a 10-1 OVC record.
Southeast will return to the Show Me Center on Saturday, February 12 to face Tennessee State. The Redhawks will look to extend their current winning streak and their home winning streak against OVC opponents to 13-straight games. Tip-off is set for 5:00 p.m.