The perfect start for the Ohio Bobcats came to an end Saturday at The Convo, falling to the visiting Eastern Carolina Pirates by a 76-68 final.
Ohio started the game out fast, going on an 11-0 run to start the game with combined scoring by Lexie Baldwin and Quiera Lampkins. However, Eastern Carolina was able to claw its way back into the game in the first half, even taking a 30-25 lead, which forced an Ohio timeout.
Shae Nelson made a pullup jump shot for ECU with less than a minute remaining in the half to pull them ahead 32-30 at the intermission.
The second half remained a dog fight between each team, as the lead changed four times in the first six minutes of action. With Ohio leading 49-48 with just under 10 minutes to go in the game, it was once again Nelson who delivered, hitting three consecutive 3-pointers to propel the Pirates to an eight-point advantage, all in the span of under a minute of play.
Trailing by eight, the Green and White (6-1) were never quite able to recover from their deficit, only shortening the lead to as much as seven for the remainder of the second half.
Kiyanna Black led the way for Ohio scoring 17 points, despite shooting just 4-19 from the floor. Three more Bobcats had double-digit scoring for Ohio despite the loss, as Lexie Baldwin and Kat Yelle each yielded 14 points. Lampkins lead Ohio with seven total rebounds.
Jada Payne led Eastern Carolina (7-2) in scoring, shooting six of 11 from the field and tallying 22 points. However, it was shooting guard Shae Nelson who made the difference in the game with her 9-0 run in the second half.
“She made some big shots and we knew that when she was going to try and score,” Ohio coach Bob Boldon said. “We tried to force her into tough shots. In the first half she missed a couple of those and we got a hand up and we made her spin and she traveled once. In the second half she got it going a little bit.”
For Ohio, it will get more than a week off before its next contest, when it plays host to James Madison in The Convo on Dec. 15.