No. 25 Point Park women suffer 70-66 home loss to Indiana Southeast
Feb. 8, 2014 at 10:40 p.m. ET
Carly Forse had a game-high 24 points for Point Park versus Indiana Southeast. Photo by Michell Montana.
By Zachary Weiss, Point Park Athletic Communications Student Assistant
WEST MIFFLIN, Pa. — The No. 25 Point Park University women’s basketball team was outscored 43-30 in the second half of its KIAC home game Saturday and lost, 70-66, to Indiana University Southeast at CCAC-South Gym.
Heather Wheat scored 20 points for Indiana Southeast (12-10, 7-5 KIAC), and Megan Cureton and Sidney Carr added 15 and 11 points, respectively, to bring the Grenadiers back from a 36-27 deficit at the half.
Carly Forse had 18 of her game-high 24 points the first half to get Point Park (23-3, 10-3 KIAC) out to the lead. The 5-10 power forward from Bishop Canevin High School was two off tying her career high before fouling out with 5:14 left and her team holding on to a 58-57 lead.
Fellow Point Park freshman post player Sam Weir had her 12th double-double with 19 points, 13 rebounds and four blocks. Her four blocks give her 79 on the season, which is a program-best and passed Joncelyn Peterkin’s 77 from the 2010-11 season.
“It’s a huge win, we’re really excited,” Wheat said. “Our goal was just to come in and play our game. We executed well given the circumstances and our coach getting kicked off. We handled it well, and I’m really proud of all of our girls.”
Indiana Southeast head coach Robin Farris picked up a technical foul in each half to get ejected. The second one came with 1:13 remaining and the Grenadiers up, 64-62. Indiana Southeast held on without its coach for its fourth win in its last five KIAC games.
Point Park got off to a fast start on its Cancer Awareness Day, leading 22-13 after the first 10 minutes in front of its largest home crowd of the season. Point Park led by as many as 12, 26-13.
Forse had 18 first-half points as the Pioneers continued to hold the lead shooting 46.4 percent from the field.
“We did a great job of getting it in the post,” Forse said. “We were getting boards and our defense was really good.”
Leading by nine at the half, Point Park went right into Forse the first possession of the second half for an 11-point lead, 38-27. But Wheat hit her third 3-pointer of the game as part of an 8-0 Grenadiers run to cut the deficit to 38-35.
Point Park responded with a 3-pointer from Alexa Xenakis, which opened a 7-1 run for a 45-36 lead at the 15:19 mark. Undeterred, Indiana Southeast scored the next 13 points in a row for a 49-45 advantage with 10:50 left.
The Grenadiers maintained the lead as the teams traded baskets for the next few minutes. But Point Park eventually went ahead when Weir made a layup with 5:41 remaining for a 58-57 lead.
A jumper by Celina DiPietro gave the Pioneers another lead of 60-59, but Indiana Southeast went back in front, 64-60, when Mary Dye hit a 3 and Wheat a layup.
DiPietro connected on another basket to cut the lead in half, and that’s when Grenadiers head coach Robin Farris was ejected with his second technical foul. With the team’s assistant coach not making the trip, Indiana Southeast had to rely on Wheat.
“We basically brought it together and wanted to win it for ourselves and him,” Wheat said. “We wanted to prove to him that we could do it, that was our motivation and we took it and ran with it.”
Point Park coach Tony Grenek chose Xenakis to take the technical foul shots, and she misfired on both to lead the score at 64-62 with 1:13 to go. Cureton then made two free throws on her next possession to bring the lead back to four.
Haley Sauer scored a layup in the final minute to give Point Park hope at 66-64, but after Cureton split two free throws, Point Park came up empty on a couple of layups. Dye made 1 of 2 free throws for Indiana Southeast the lead grew to 68-64, and Point Park came up empty of a 3-point attempt.
DiPietro scored a second chance layup to get the Pioneers within 68-66, but there were just three seconds left. Cureton then put the game away with two free throws at the other end, 70-66.
“We definitely played better in the first half,” Forse said. “We made stupid mistakes in the second half that kind of put a damper on things.”
The Pioneers will next travel to Wilmore, Ky. and face Asbury Saturday in a matchup that has large implications in the KIAC regular season title race.
Point Park women's basketball held its annual Cancer Awareness Game on Saturday with this year's event in memory of Nancy Gallagher. All gameday proceeds were donated to the Pittsburgh Promise in the name of Mrs. Gallagher, who lost her battle with cancer Nov. 25.
Mrs. Gallagher, who was an honorary coach at the Cancer Awareness games the last two years, is the mother of former Point Park players Maeve Gallagher. Maeve Gallagher was a senior last season, and she served as an honorary coach in the game on Saturday.
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