WBB: ‘Dons Drop Tough Battle at Home in Final Seconds

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – A season-high 31 points by Haley Seibert was not enough to push the IPFW women’s basketball team past Summit League leader South Dakota, as the Mastodons fell 73-72.

Seibert led all players on 10-of-14 shooting, including six three-pointers. The senior added a game-high three steals to go along with three assists. Keanna Gary had a solid all-around night with 12 points, four rebounds, two blocks, and two steals. Courtney Ogle also finished in double-digits off the bench with 11 points and four rebounds. Mur Hagerman and Rachel Rinehart led the team with five rebounds, respectively.

Each team began the game with a 6-0 run as IPFW took the early lead before South Dakota answered to tie the game four minutes in. The two sides traded several leads before the Mastodons jumped out in front on a three from Ogle. After a Coyote basket, the IPFW defense held USD without a point over a four-minute span as the ‘Dons scored nine consecutive points to lead 26-16 with 6:05 to go in the half.

South Dakota closed out the half on a 7-2 advantage, but Ogle was fouled with 1.0 seconds left and connected on both free throws to give the Mastodons a 32-27 lead at halftime.

IPFW’s lead dwindled to one, 40-39, as South Dakota used an 8-1 run four minutes into the second half. Later, at the 12:46 mark, USD took a one-point lead on a jumper. The Coyote lead grew to six before the Mastodons fought back as Seibert connected three times from downtown, including two in a 36-second span, as IPFW pulled ahead 60-58.

With 2:19 left in the game and the ‘Dons leading 66-64, the Coyotes scored seven straight points to take the lead for good. IPFW pulled within one with 7.6 seconds left on a three by Kamilah Carter. After a missed free throw by South Dakota, a Mastodon half-court shot at the buzzer was no good as the squad dropped to 7-12 on the season and 1-5 in league play.

The ‘Dons shot 59.3 percent in the second half to the finish the night 22-of-55 (45.5%) from the field, 8-of-16 (50%) on three-point attempts, and 14-of-23 (60.9%) at the free throw line.

IPFW returns to the court for Homecoming on January 24 against Denver at 3 p.m.

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