Lady Hornets’ shooting slump continues at Watson Chapel

PINE BLUFF — Since a 45-point second-half eruption against Maumelle on Dec. 4, a shooting slump has overtaken the Bryant Lady Hornets and, as a result, they have now lost three games in a row after a 3-1 start.

On Dec. 5 against Central Arkansas Christian, the Lady Hornets were 6 of 29 (21 percent) through three quarters but found better results in a fourth only to come up short 38-32. They wound up at 31 percent for the game.

On Dec. 9 in a tournament in Morrilton against Clarksville, Bryant was at 23 percent from the field through three periods (7 of 30) then recovered enough to get the game to overtime before losing on a buzzer-beater.

The latest example came in a 48-20 loss — by far, their worst of the season — in which they shot just 18 percent (7 of 40) from the floor for the game including an 0 for 9 in the fourth quarter.

It didn’t help that the game was on the road against a very tall, skilled Watson Chapel Lady Wildcats team, now 7-2. And the home cookin’ was pretty tasty for the Lady Cats, who were only cited for six fouls the entire game. Bryant was whistled for 15. Early in the fourth quarter, Chapel had been called once since the break; Bryant seven times.

At one point in the third quarter, players from both teams — three or four altogether — hit the floor with no call.

But even when the Lady Hornets got to the free-throw line, they just couldn’t get shots to fall. They were 4 of 10.

Raija Todd, who led Bryant with 13 points, hit two buckets early in the game and the Lady Hornets were within 5-4. But Todd’s pull-up jumper with 5:50 left in the opening quarter was the team’s last field goal until the 1:59 mark of the second quarter when Annie Patton knocked down a 3.

In the interim, Chapel finished the first quarter on a 12-0 run, taking a 17-4 lead into the second stanza, then extended that to 19-0 before Bryant’s Emily Ridgell hit a free throw to make it 24-5 at the 2:28 mark.

Patton’s 3 closed the gap some. Later, in the final seconds of the half, Ridgell made a steal and was fouled with :04.9 showing. She converted once and the Lady Cats’ lead was 24-9 at the break.

A 9-2 start to the second half pushed the lead to 33-11. Todd, following her own miss, provided the only Bryant basket during the run.

Seven points from Todd, including a 3, allowed the Lady Hornets to cut the margin to 34-18 going into the fourth quarter. But they were limited to single free throws from Destiny Martin and Ridgell over the final eight minutes. The largest lead was 25.

Peyton Martin, a 6-0 forward that starts alongside 6-4 Shanna Shavers, scored 13 points and collected 12 rebounds for Chapel. Cayla Trotter scored 13 and had 10 boards. LaDajah Scott scored 12.

The Lady Hornets will try to regroup and come back after Christmas in a holiday tournament at Beebe. They’ll open at 10 a.m., on Monday, Dec. 28, against Brookland.

LADY WILDCATS 48, LADY HORNETS 20

Score by quarters

BRYANT                      4          5          9          2 — 20

Watson Chapel          17       7          10       14 — 48

LADY HORNETS (3-4) 20

Todd 6-18 0-0 13, Ridgell 0-9 3-8 3, D.Martin 0-0 1-2 1, Rogers 0-2 0-0 0, Patton 1-4 0-0 3, Miller 0-6 0-0 0, Loveless 0-0 0-0 0, Williams 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 7-40 (18%) 4-10 (40%) 20.

LADY WILDCATES (7-2) 48

Trotter 5-9 3-5 13, Cole 1-8 1-2 3, Shavers 1-3 0-0 2, Scott 4-7 2-2 12, P.Martin 5-7 2-5 13, Bell 0-3 0-0 0, Sargent 1-1 0-0 3, Marcus 1-2 0-0 2, Monk 0-4 0-0 0. Totals 18-44 (41%) 8-14 (57%) 48.

Three-point field goals: Bryant 2-14 (Todd 1-4, Patton 1-4, Ridgell 0-2, Miller 0-2, Rogers 0-1, Williams 0-1), Watson Chapel 4-12 (Scott 2-3, P.Martin 1-1, Sargent 1-1, Cole 0-4, Monk 0-2, Marcus 0-1). Turnovers: Bryant 15, Watson Chapel 16. Rebounds: Bryant 9-12 21 (Todd 3-1 4, Ridgell 1-3 4, Miller 1-2 3, Rogers 1-1 2, Loveless 0-2 2, Patton 0-1 1, D.Martin 1-0 1, team 2-2 4), Watson Chapel 14-25 39 (P.Martin 6-6 12, Trotter 3-7 10, Shavers 2-4 6, Scott 1-1 2, Bell 0-2 2, Sargent 0-2 2, Monk 1-0 1, team 1-3 4). Team fouls: Bryant 15, Watson Chapel 6.

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