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IRVING, Texas – The University of Dallas women's basketball team fell 58-48 to Texas Lutheran University on Friday evening at the Maher Center.
A 16-9 first quarter favoring the visitors was too difficult to overcome as the Crusaders shot 28.6 percent in field goals with 14 made. The team was able to remain within striking distance thanks to 10 more free throws counted (16) than the Bulldogs.
The setback is the second in a row for Dallas, who are now 7-10 overall and 1-5 in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference (SCAC) games. Texas Lutheran improved its record to 6-10 and 2-3 in the SCAC.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Dallas trailed the whole game after allowing the first six points to go in for the opposition. Celsi Caraway (Arlington, Texas) was able to score the first field goal for the Crusaders on a jumper five and a half minutes into play. It was a low-scoring start after two free throws by Vanessa Diaz (San Antonio, Texas) cut the margin in half at 10-5.
A couple three-pointers by TLU's Jordan Estrada and Madyson Garcia lifted the team to a strong ending.
Both team's scored 16 points in the next quarter. After trading points in the first few plays, Dominque Campos drained a trifecta to make it a double-digit margin (21-11) for the first time of the game two minutes in. That seemed to be the margin the Crusaders would settle near the majority of the remainder of play.
A few triples by Caraway and DeCoud had shrunk the deficit back under 10 over the next few minutes, but six straight points through 3:08 pushed the Bulldog's lead back to 13. However, the guests went without any points until halftime. Dallas was able to tally six points to reduce the difference to seven (32-25).
The third period started with DeCoud continuing the stretch of home points moving to eight. Texas Lutheran responded with eight unanswered to increase the edge back to double-digits at 13 (40-27) with 6:13 left in the frame. Another little surge after Dallas had made it a nine-point deficit would send the Bulldogs up as many as 15 with a minute left. Helen Onyenso (Oak Park, Ill.) and Diaz connected on a pair of free throws apiece within the last 35 seconds to trail 11.
Just past three minutes in the last quarter, Onyenso picked up a steal and her classmate DeCoud sank a jumper to make it 51-42. TLU's Cami Davis answered the next possession with a three, and the Bulldogs never allowed their edge to slip under 10.
The Crusaders were led by DeCoud with a game-high 17 points and eight rebounds. She dished four assists as well to tie Davis for the Bulldogs. Diaz was also in double figures with a personal-best 12 points.
She scored 10 of them from the free throw line. Diaz is third player this season to connect on 10 free throws or more, and first to do so since Onyenso's 11 at Dallas Christian College (Dec. 5).
The Bulldogs shot 42.9 percent from the floor and had six three-pointers. The team also only had six free throws, but only missed on one attempt. UD was just edged by one on the boards 36-35 and had one extra turnover at 20-19. TLU scored 21 points from the miscues. Both sides had seven second chance points.
Davis and Presley Stephens each matched team-bests in scoring with 16 points. Stephens pulled down a team-high eight rebounds and swatted four blocks.
DeCoud surpassed 300 points on the campaign. The scoring average leader entering play achieves the feat consecutive years and improved her double-digit scoring streak dating last season to 20.
Onyenso picked up two steals in the first quarter to eclipse 100 for her career. She finished with four overall, and is now the 23rd player (2nd this season) in the program to reach the century mark.
16 made free throws for the Crusaders is most since 23 at Dallas Christian in early December.
Final | #UDCrusaders Women's Basketball drops Friday's #SCACwbb game to TLU. DeCoud led with 17 Pts., while Diaz dropped in 10 from the free throw line to lead to a personal-best! | @dallaswbb #GoUD #UDWBB #d3h pic.twitter.com/5cBh5Obyom— UDallas Athletics (@UDallasSports) January 20, 2018
Dallas wraps up a four-game home stretch on Sunday with Southwestern University. Tip-off is slated for around 2 p.m. after the men's game.