SAINT LEO, Fla. – The Saint Leo women's basketball team (6-4) could not overcome 24 turnovers as the Lions fell to the Maryville University Saints (4-6), 65-56, Wednesday evening from the Marion Bowman Activities Center. The non-region loss was the Lions fourth consecutive defeat.
Despite being even with the Saints at halftime, 24 turnovers, including five consecutive giveaways to begin the second half, put the Lions at a double-digit disadvantage for the majority of the final 20 minutes as they eventually fell by nine. In total, Maryville registered 22 points off of Lions' turnovers.
Chelsea Williams got the Lions going in the right direction as two consecutive baskets, coupled with the aggressive inside play of guard Asia Wilson, put the Lions up 10-5 with 14:22 to play. However, the Saints, led by shooting guard Shelby Miller, got Maryville going from the outside as five, three-point baskets soon gave Maryville a 20-16 lead. The Lions clawed their way back into the contest when Shalisa Hill led a 7-0 charge to give the Green and Gold a 23-20 lead with 6:52 to play. From there, the two teams went back and forth and eventually entered the halftime break knotted at 27 behind a Wilson layup with 16 seconds to go.
Turnovers changed the momentum of the game in the second half, however, as five Saint Leo turnovers to begin the final stanza resulted in the Saints going on a 15-2 run to gain a 42-29 lead with 14:53 to play. After seeing the lead grow to as much as 14, the Lions made one final charge in the final minutes. Forceful inside play by Wilson and Williams, along with consistent free throw shooting from Chelsea Connelly, brought the lead down to six with 2:31 to play. The Lions offense could not pull even with the sharp-shooting Saints, however, as precision free throw shooting by the Saints iced the game over the final 50 seconds.
Despite the loss, the Lions out-rebounded the Saints, 47-37, and shot better overall, shooting at a 40 percent clip (24-for-60).
The Lions will return to the court on Saturday, December 31, when they open SSC action against Lynn University. Tip-off for the in-region contest is set for 2 p.m. from the Marion Bowman Activities Center on the campus of Saint Leo University. For the latest news, information, and updates on the women's basketball team, visit SaintLeoLions.com.