After a back-and-forth battle Tuesday evening, the Westminster women's basketball team fell to Eureka College, 80-83. The Westminster Blue Jays are now 1-2 in St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SLIAC) play.
After six lead changes in the first four minutes of the game, the Blue Jays went on a 10-0 run, giving them the 17-9 lead. The Eureka Red Devils chipped away, and with 4:34 left in the half, they took the lead (33-32). A three-pointer by senior Leigh Ann Lutz quickly took back the lead with 4:11 on the clock. The Blue Jays held on, heading into halftime with the 39-38 lead.
The Red Devils came into the second half and blasted the Blue Jays with a 16-4 run, taking the 55-43 lead. During the next five minutes, the Lady Blue Jays slowed the Red Devils down while putting points on the board. With 7:34 left in the game, the Blue Jays tied it up at 65-65. The lead jumped back-and-forth and the game tied six times before the Red Devils took the 79-77 lead with two made free throws from Eureka's Caty Eeten. Eeten finished the game with 40 points.
The Blue Jays closed the gap to one point, 81-80, after a three-pointer from sophomore Mackenzie Haddox with 33 seconds left in the game. With 8 seconds left in the game, the Blue Jays fouled, sending the Red Devils to the line. Eureka made both free throws, taking the 83-80 lead. The Blue Jays attempted to score, but could not get a shot off in time, ending the game with the 83-80 loss.
"To lose to Eureka in such a tough battle is disappointing, but not devastating," commented sophomore Kasey Gatson. "We'll use this loss to fuel our fire to improve everyday and continue to define and mesh together our individual roles, which will make us into a championship caliber team."
The Blue Jays' scoring was led by Lutz and Haddox with 23 and 20 points, respectively. Lutz went 4-11 from the three-point line and 7-7 from the foul line. Freshman Andrea Zalis and Haddox dominated the boards with 7 and 6 rebounds, respectively.
The Lady Blue Jays will travel to Memphis, Tennessee to participate in the Bancorp South Holiday Classic hosted by Rhodes College on December 29-30. They will play Rhodes College on Sunday, December 29, at 6:00 p.m, followed by a game against Birmingham-Southern on Monday, December 30, at 1:00 p.m. The games will be aired here. You can also follow the game with live stats here.