This past Sunday, the East Carolina University (3-13, 0-3 AAC) women’s basketball team fell to Wichita State University (9-7, 1-2 AAC) by a score of 61-53 inside of Minges Coliseum. With the defeat, ECU has now lost nine straight contests.
"I think if you go back and look at every game, we're probably fouling more than the other team and that's going to happen because of the way we play defense," head coach Kim McNeill said. "We're extremely aggressive and I'm okay with the aggressive fouls, diving on the floor or closing up our traps, but the fouls that we're making where we're just kind of reaching in there at the last minute on put backs and giving up and 1's, that has to stop."
Freshman guard Katerina Tsineke led in scoring for the Pirates, finishing with a career high of 15 points. Tsineke also had three three-pointers. Sophomore guard Lashonda Monk also posted a solid game, scoring in double figures. Monk had 12 points and also added a team high seven rebounds and six steals.
Sophomore forward Trajata Colbert led the charge for Wichita State, having a team-high 12 points. Junior guard Mariah McCully followed close with 11 points. Also, Asia Henderson led the Shockers defensively with nine rebounds.
In the first and second quarters, the Pirates were in arms reach of taking the lead. In the first quarter, the Pirates scored seven points while the Shockers had 17. In the second, the Pirates only managed to score seven with Wichita scoring 11 points. Wichita went into halftime sporting an eight-point lead at 28-20.
Coming out of the locker room, the Pirates found their momentum. They dominated in the third quarter which has recently been a struggle. Out of the gate, Monk and Tsineke drained three-pointers to cut the lead to two at 26-28.
The Pirates were even able to snatch the lead after a 14-3 run and another three from Tsineke, giving the Pirates a 34-31 advantage. Tsineke scored 10 out of her 15 points in the third quarter after draining a late three to tie the game up at 40-40 going into the fourth and final stanza.
"Once I made the first one, I was sure that I was going to make the second one and the third one. I believed it," Tsineke said.
The beginning of the fourth was exciting as both teams went back and forth trading off the lead. The Pirates gained a two point advantage at 47-45 after Tsineke drained a free throw with only 6:40 left to play. The Pirates soon lost their momentum and were only able to score four more points in the remaining time. The Shockers took advantage of this and were able to go on a 15-4 run closing out the match with 10 of their points coming from the free throw line.
"I thought we just lost our composure a little bit and started making some really bad turnovers, which led to offense for them," McNeill said.
The Pirates finished 19-of-56 (.339) from the field, 6-of-22 (.273) from three and 9-of-20 (.450) from the charity stripe. Wichita did not do as well as the Pirates from the field or from three, but they absolutely dominated from the free throw line. Wichita went 15-of-45 (.333) from the floor, 3-of-17 (.176) from three and 28-of-40 (.700) from the line.
The Pirates will be on the road for their next two games with their first being on Sunday against the University of Houston (8-9, 1-2 AAC) and then on Tuesday against the University of Tulsa (5-11, 0-3 AAC).
Tip-off between the Pirates and Cougars is scheduled for 3 p.m. on Sunday in Houston, Texas.