College Basketball: Balanced attack leads to ETBU women's basketball's first win

East Texas Baptist University held off the Centenary College Ladies, 68-53, in women’s basketball action.

In another exciting game at the 2022 Tip Off Classic in Ornelas Gym, East Texas Baptist University held off the Centenary College Ladies, 68-53, in women’s basketball action. ETBU is now 1-1 overall.

Leading ETBU was Michaela James and Tiffany Bickford, both with 10 points and three rebounds. Brooke Webster recorded nine points and seven rebounds, followed by Mollie Dittmar with eight points and seven rebounds. The Tigers forced 10 turnovers with seven steals and led in rebounds, 48-42. ETBU’s defense only allowed the Ladies to shoot 29 percent from the floor and 7.1 percent from the arc, while shooting 63.2 percent from the line. ETBU shot 32.1 percent overall, with six three-pointers totaling 30 percent and 26 free throws for 83.9 percent.

First Half

ETBU held an early lead against Centenary, going up 5-0, with free throws from Dittmar and Bridget Upton. The Ladies put two points on the board, and ETBU answered with a layup by Webster, bringing the score to 10-2. Centenary closed the gap to four points, 12-8, on a turnover followed by a jump shot. James made a three-pointer, raising the lead to five, 15-10. Webster recorded two free throws before the end of the first quarter for the seven-point advantage, 17-10.

The second quarter stayed closed, with the ETBU scoring 11 points and Centenary with 10. The Tigers had the first point with a free throw by Jamara Levy, 18-10. Both teams kept the game tight, going nearly three minutes on the game clock without a point. Dittmar recorded two free throws giving ETBU a 10-point lead, 22-12. The Ladies brought four points with two jump shots, 24-16. ETBU pushed the score back to seven-points, 27-20, with a free throw by James and a shot by Kenidi White. Levy scored the final point of the first half on a free-throw making it, 28-20.

Second Half

The Tigers improved their lead over the Ladies in the third quarter, scoring 19 points but only giving up 11. Upton made the first point of the second half with a turnover followed by a layup at the 8:38, 30-20. James followed with two free throws, giving a ETBU a 12-point lead, 32-20. Centenary put their first points of the quarter on the board at 5:33 with a jump shot, 36-22. Free throws by James gave ETBU a 20-point lead, the largest of the game, 42-22. The Ladies went on a run with layups and a free throw, bringing the score to within 17-points, 45-28. Dittmar added a layup for a 19-point lead, 47-28, before the Ladies recorded a three-pointer at the buzzer making it, 47-31.

Similar to the second quarter, the final quarter was kept close with ETBU allowing 22 points and scoring 21. Centenary was the first to put points on the board with a shot in the paint cutting the lead to 14, 47-33. Bickford brought a second chance three-pointer to move the lead back to 18 points, 51-33. Free throws by Sydney Maxwell and shots from outside the arc by Bickford and Chloe Rogers pushed the lead 24 points, which was the the largest of the game, 61-37. Centenary went on a run of free throws, lowering the lead to 20, 61-41. The teams went back and forth the rest of the way, with the lead staying under 21. A three-pointer by Erin Berry made it a 21-point lead, again, 68-47. Centenary went on a run, ending with two free throws at 0:13 for a final of 68-53.

Up Next

ETBU will head to Memphis, Tennessee next weekend to take on Rhodes College on Friday, Nov. 18 at 6 p.m. and Fontbonne University, Saturday, Nov. 19 at 2 p.m. The Tigers have played Rhodes College two times, winning the last match-up 65-53 in March at the NCAA Tournament. This will be the Tigers’ first game against Fontbonne University, who is currently sitting 0-0 with ETBU being their first match of the season.

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