After 14 straight victories, the women’s basketball team came up just short of number 15 when they fell 63-54 to Lamar on Thursday.
The Wildcats were unable to overcome a season-high 25 turnovers, as Lamar outscored ACU 14-9 in points off turnovers.
Lamar was also able to hold the Wildcats to just 26.2 percent from the field and 16.7 percent from three-point range, which head coach Julie Goodenough credited to the Cardinals high pressure game plan.
“Lamar put a great deal of defensive pressure on us which caused way too many turnovers and also led to rushed shots,” Goodenough said.
ACU entered the matchup on the tail end of a 28-point victory over Lamar and was averaging almost 80 points per game during conference play. But after junior Alexis Mason hit a buzzer-beater to cap a 16 point first quarter for her and 22-point quarter for the team, the Wildcats scored just 32 points the final three quarters.
In the loss, Mason set a career-high with 30 points and fell just two rebounds short of her second consecutive double-double.
“I was just in a zone and trying to do all I could to help the team and help us stay in the game,” Mason said.
Junior Sydney Shelstead was the only other Wildcat to hit double figures with 11 points and seven rebounds. Juniors Lizzy and Suzzy Dimba pulled down 25 of ACU’s season-high 55 rebounds contributing 14 and 11 respectively.
Thursday night’s match up was the first game all season in which ACU never held a lead, as the Cardinals were able to push their lead to 14 late in the second half.
Despite the loss, the Wildcats remain first in the Southland Conference standing at 9-1, as they hold the tie-breaker over Central Arkansas.
“Our mission statement is Godly women striving for excellence,” Goodenough said. “We try to live that out daily so I would expect our players and staff will respond to this disappointing loss with a great focused effort in practice on Friday to prepare to get back on the winning track.”
The Wildcats were get their chance Saturday when they take one Southeastern Louisiana (3-17, 2-7), which will wrap up a short three day, two-game road trip.
“It is a quick turnaround for our next game so we can’t sit around pout about this game,” Mason said. “We have to learn from the mistakes we made tonight and get it done in practice Friday and in the next game make strides.”
ACU is 2-0 in games after a loss this season.