Point Park women have comeback fall short in AMC loss to Malone
Jan. 27, 2011
WEST MIFFLIN, Pa. – A missed 3-pointer at the buzzer was the only thing that kept the Point Park University women’s basketball team from erasing all of a 19-point second half deficit in what was a 55-53 home loss to Malone in American Mideast Conference action Thursday night.
Ashley Henderson led all scorers with 24 points for Point Park (11-9, 3-6 AMC), but her potential game-winning 3-pointer at the top of the key was no good as time expired.
After a miserable first 28 minutes of the game, Point Park trailed, 47-28, with 11:55 to play. But the Pioneers held Malone (6-16, 2-7 AMC) to just eight points the rest of the way, and Point Park’s April Austin nailed a trey with 12 seconds left to make it a 55-53 game.
Malone missed a shot on the other end, and the rebound went out of bounds. On the ensuing inbounds play, Henderson got free near midcourt and took a couple dribbles up court before pulling up at the top of the key.
Malone snapped a six-game losing streak, and Point Park fell to 3-6 in the AMC. The schedule does not get any easier for Point Park as it welcomes one of the hottest team in the conference, Notre Dame (OH) (17-5, 7-1 AMC) to CCAC-South Gymnasium Saturday (1 p.m.). After that, the Pioneers visit NAIA DII #12 Walsh (16-4, 7-1 AMC) on Tuesday.
Point Park once again fell victim to early shooting woes as it started the game 3 of 18 from the field. By that point, Malone assumed a 24-9 lead with 5:03 left in the first half. Henderson had 12 points by halftime to keep Point Park within 34-20 at the break.
Point Park shot 31 percent the first half and matched that number the final 20 minutes to finish with 31-percent shooting for the night. The Pioneers connected on only 5 of 19 3-pointers for 26 percent from long range.
Malone shot 31 percent for the game, and its 14-point halftime lead was built largely on its six 3-pointers before the break. The visiting Pioneers held on for the win despite shooting 23 percent (7 of 30) the second half. Reserve Caitlin Sharp was the only Malone player in double figures. She came off the bench for 11 points, which included a 3-for-5 showing from outside the arc.
Malone maintained its 14-point, halftime lead the first five minutes of the second stanza as it was still leading, 38-24, with 15:33 to go. A few minutes later, Sharp capped off a 7-2 Malone spurt with a 3-pointer to make it 47-28.
Point Park scored the next nine points, which was spurred on by newly added forward Terrica Jones, as the Pioneers cut the deficit to 47-37. A 5-10 junior who was added the Pioneers’ roster Jan. 21, Jones finished with season-highs of 10 points and five rebounds.
Although Malone managed to build a 52-37 advantage thanks to a big 3-pointer by Julie Conley and a breakaway layup by Ashley Speicher, Point Park responded with 13 unanswered points to trim the margin to 52-50 with 1:54 to go.
After a pair of missed free throws by Point Park, Malone converted twice at the line for a 54-50 edge. Following a couple of missed 3-pointers by Point Park, Malone hit another free throw for a 55-50 advantage. Austin, who finished with 11 points, connected from downtown on the ensuing possession as the deficit was 55-53.