IRVING, Texas – The University of Dallas women's basketball team fought hard to erase a large early deficit by outscoring Southwestern University 29-11 through the middle periods. However, Dallas was outscored in the first and final frames and fell 66-56 on Sunday at the Maher Center.
The Pirates won the rebounding battle 55-36, which included 28 on the offensive side. They used that advantage to fuel a 30-10 difference in 2nd Chance Points. Dallas trailed by 13 heading into the first break, but eventually led for the first time about midway through the third quarter Its largest lead was six, and Southwestern nipped that margin to carry a two-point edge into the last 10 minutes.
Dallas finished the homestand 1-3 with its third setback in a row to drop to 7-11 overall and 1-6 in conference. Southwestern halted a three-game slide to improve to 6-11 and 2-4.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Southwestern pushed its lead to double-digits right away with a 12-2 display. The first four points went to the visitors before Madilyne Borjon (San Antonio, Texas) hit a jumper to get UD on the board. Noel Prats drained a three, Kelsey Faykus got a layup, and Tori Carraway completed an old fashioned three-point play to complete that run.
Borjon went 2-for-2 at the line to score four of her team's first five points and get the score under double-digits. Another surge for the Pirates midway through reflected their largest lead of the game (16). Zhazze Brown had a trey followed by Brooke Swift getting a steal that led to Cecily Woolfolk completing the fastbreak layup.
Dallas remained down as many as 15 seven minutes into the second half, but flipped the momentum with eight straight points from 2:55 to 0:58 to reduce the gap to 33-26. Jules Oliveti (Southlake, Texas) and Michelle DeCoud (Monument, Colo.) each went back-to-back on field goals to create the spark. Pratts split at the free throw line with 43 seconds to send the teams into halftime at 34-26. The Crusaders held their opponent without a field goal the last 3:11 minutes that period.
The drought continued into the start of the third, as Naomi Brown etched the first field goal in eight minutes. That basket also was SU's first points of the third, and halted a stretch of 14 unanswered by Dallas. All three Dallas seniors were instrumental in that surge with DeCoud scoring the first three at the free throw line. Onyenso and DeCoud hit the next jumpers, and then Onyenso put in a fastbreak layup to give Dallas its first lead of the afternoon (35-34) with 6:38. Waldron rounded out the trio of UD classmates with a trifecta. Celsi Caraway (Arlington, Texas) knocked down both free throws to complete the outburst and reflect Dallas to its biggest lead.
The Pirates responded by going back up one with Brown hitting a jumper with two and a half left that frame. Onyenso tied the score a final time at 42 by hitting the front end of two shots at the line. Catherine Staskawicz came up with the go-ahead score at 1:05 after getting the team's ninth offensive rebound that quarter. The Pirates tallied all 10 of their points in the third on 2nd chance opportunities.
Seven points in a row to start the last quarter lifted the road team to a margin too far for UD. Dallas got its first points on a Waldron jumper with five and a half left to play. She added a three-pointer to finish with a personal-best eight points and cut the deficit to eight with 36 seconds. That was the closest the game would be through the last horn.
DeCoud boasted her ninth double-double on the season with 20 points and 10 boards. The forward added three assists and steals. She was the lone UD player to score double figures, with her teammates Waldron and Onyenso being the next highest scorers with eight and seven. Oliveti pulled down 10 rebounds, as her and DeCoud combined for 20 of the team's 36.
Dallas outshot the Pirates (32.7% - 31.1%) from the floor, but both teams were equal in made three-pointers (4) and free throws (16). Southwestern edged points in the paint 30-18, and had a 25-15 advantage in bench points.
Two players reached double-digits with Faykus and Brown both having 10 points to lead the guests. The tandem also each grabbed eight boards apiece, with Brown having seven offensive. Carraway and Madison Edwards tossed in nine points each. Swift dished five dimes, while Pratts and Edwards both gave three.
DeCoud moved into second all-time in the program for made field goals with 503. She passed Kylie Yoshimura (499).
The Crusaders have connected on four three-pointers during the last three games. They also matched their made free throw totals this weekend with 16 in both contests.
After going without a blocked shot consecutive outings, Dallas achieved four or more as a team for the sixth time on the season. The last time the Crusaders swatted at least that number was four at Southwestern Adventist University (Jan. 10).
Dallas begins the second half of conference play and will see its same foes from this past weekend on the road. The four-game away stretch starts January 26th at Texas Lutheran University. The next day, the Crusaders rematch Southwestern.