SAINT LEO, Fla. – The Saint Leo women’s basketball team (13-12, 6-8 SSC) fell in Sunshine State Conference to the Rollins Tars 67-53, Saturday afternoon from the Bowman Center.
Sierra Williams posted a team-best 11 points and Lauren Lee accumulated nine points to go along with five boards. Dominique Daniels and Brianna Lollis registered eight points apiece, while Daniels amassed a game-best six rebounds. Willonda Windham chipped in six points and led all SLU players with 4 assists.
The Lions shot 32.8 percent (19-for-58) from the field, but only 23.5 percent (4-for-17) from the three-point-line. The Lions won the turnover battle, 20-17, but were out-rebounded, 51-29. The Tars also registered five blocks on the night, compared to zero for SLU. Rollins owned the battle in the paint as well, outscoring Saint Leo, 40-24.
In the first half, both teams used the early minutes to get a feel for the game. The two teams exchanged baskets and with 16:30 left in the first half, SLU grabbed a three-point, 8-5 lead.
However, Rollins chipped away at the lead over the next three minutes. With 13:27 on the clock, the Tars secured a lead they never relinquished. In fact, the Tars used eight minutes of the half to go on a 12-2 run and grab a 17-10 lead with 8:53 to play.
Daniels and Monique Reynard put a halt to the run, as they ran-off five-straight points to cut the lead back down to two, 17-15.
The Tars defense remained tenacious, however, allowing SLU to score just eight points over the final eight minutes. During the stretch, Rollins extended the lead back seven before going into the locker room up five, 28-23.
Out of the break, Reynard connecte don her second three-pointer of the day to cut the lead to two, 28-26. Still, the shot only seemed to trigger the Tars’ offense as the proceeded to go on an 11-2 run and gain an 11-point lead.
Despite efforts by Brianna Lollis and Williams, the Tars persistent defense kept SLU at a distance for the remainder of the game. The double-digit running lead was broken only once in the final 10 minutes, while the offense pushed the lead to as much as 19 in the second half.
The Lions attempted to get back into the game when Lee and Kiara Bradley scored six-straight Saint Leo points to drop the lead down to nine with 5:21 to play. A 12-2 Tars run quickly ended any hopes of a comeback as the Lions dropped the SSC contest. SLU , with the SSC loss, now stands at sixth in the conference.
The Lions have now dropped four-straight games and have yet to beat the Tars this decade.
The Lions will now prepare for their trek to St. Petersburg, Fla. which is set for Wednesday, February 24th at the McArthur Center. Tip-off for the game is set for 5:30 p.m.