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Off night bites Lady Tigers

By Staff
SCRAMBLING UWA's Thelma Hearn, right, tips the ball away from Alabama-Huntsville's Jesse Inman on Monday night. Photo by Paula Merritt/ The Meridian Star
By Jeff Byrd/staff writer
Jan. 22, 2002
LIVINGSTON, Ala. The shots were not falling for the Lady Tigers of West Alabama here Monday night. It didn't matter where they were taken, either.
Three-point shots, drives from the baseline, even free throws, failed to go down for Amanda Marks' team. The end result was a 62-55 home loss to Alabama-Huntsville in a Gulf South Conference women's game at Pruitt Hall.
The loss snapped a seven-game winning streak for West Alabama and it was the first loss in GSC play following six straight wins. The Lady Tigers fall to 13-3 overall and 6-1 in the GSC.
The game's stat sheet pretty much told the story. Four-for-28 on three-point shots, 21-of-69 on all field goals, and a surprisingly weak, 9-of-16, performance from the line.
West Alabama had entered the contest shooting a solid 73 percent from the line. The 55 points scored was the second lowest total on the season.
Following a first half which saw three ties and eight lead changes, West Alabama never led in the second half.
CaMeshia Pete provided West an inside option early in the second half, getting two baskets the last off a nice feed from Thelma Hearn. That bucket tied the game for the final time at 34-34.
But Pete then picked up her fourth foul with 16:28 to play. LaKendra Hogg made both free throws and Huntsville never trailed again.
A three-pointer by All-GSC forward Kim Young, followed by a conventional three-point play by Rachel Highfield, put UAH up 42-36. The spread reached its high point at 48-38 with 10:23 to play.
West Alabama freshman guard Tausha Evans finally got a three-pointer to go down. Kim Cooper followed with a putback to cap a seven-point spurt to make it 48-45.
Down seven, Evans made another trey to cut the lead to four at 52-48 with 6:49 left. Her fourth and final three-pointer came at the 5:20 mark and that helped keep West within five at 56-51.
The Lady Tigers missed a golden chance to get closer when Nikki Jones missed a drive in the lane. Jones, who normally averages nine per game, was 0-for-12 from the field.
Hearn came back with a steal and lay-up to make it 56-53 with 3:22 left. The Lady Tigers, however, could not get any closer.
Hearn missed a one-and-one, Jones missed another close shot and Evans couldn't find the range on her final two, three-point shots. Huntsville countered by making four of five free throws in the final 1:30 to lock up the win.
Huntsville improves to 9-7 overall and 4-3 in the GSC. Charger Coach Andy Blackston was gratified to see his team play well on the road.
Young led Huntsville with 15. LaDasha Thompson, Hogg and Highfield all stepped up with 11 points each. UAH shot 37 percent from the floor and was 17 of 28 from the line.
Evans paced West Alabama with 16 points, despite going 4-for-16 from behind the arc. Kim Cooper posted 12 points and had 10 rebounds.
Hearn had eight points, nine boards and six assists. Pete had eight points and seven rebounds but played just 17 minutes because of fouls.