North Texas Daily

Late turnovers hurt Mean Green women’s basketball in regular season finale

Late turnovers hurt Mean Green women’s basketball in regular season finale

Late turnovers hurt Mean Green women’s basketball in regular season finale
March 05
23:22 2014

Akshay Mirchandani // Staff Writer

The Mean Green women’s basketball team couldn’t pull off an upset against the University of Southern Mississippi Lady Eagles, third in Conference USA, falling 80-77 Wednesday night at the Super Pit in the regular season finale. The team also honored seniors Laura McCoy, Hannah Christian, Desiree Nelson and Ash’Lynne Evans in a pregame ceremony for senior night.

Southern Miss (24-5, 13-3) came into the game on a ten game winning streak and with the number one scoring offense in Conference USA, averaging 79.1 points per game. However, the Mean Green (12-17, 6-10) hung with the Lady Eagles in the first half. McCoy hit four three-pointers in the first half and the Mean Green took a 35-30 lead into halftime.

“We got in a rhythm offensively and defensively. They couldn’t score,” McCoy said. “We packed the paint and they are not comfortable shooting from the outside and it was working to our advantage.”

The Mean Green began the second half on a 10-2 run and took a 14 point lead with 13:03 remaining. After Southern Miss chipped away and took back the lead in the middle of the half, the Mean Green recovered and held a 70-63 lead with 3:19 to go.

However, UNT turned the ball over six times in the final three minutes of the game and the Lady Eagles were able to take advantage of those opportunities to steal the victory. Head coach Mike Petersen emphasized the importance of playing safe at the end of the game.

“We had been handling their pressure all game long because we’ve been playing over the top of it,” head coach Mike Petersen said. “And then we got very, very tentative and very, very hesitant.”

McCoy had 12 points in her final home game in a Mean Green uniform. Junior guard Janis Peterson had 19 points while sophomore forward Alexis Hyder had 23 points and 10 rebounds. Hyder said the team has to figure out how to win games like this.

“I feel good about the tournament. I’m just done with this same story,” Hyder said. “We come in here and we talk about the same thing every day. We got to figure out how to finish games.”

This loss eliminates the chance that the Mean Green had of getting a first round bye for the tournament. The opponent for the first game hasn’t been decided yet, but the first round will begin March 11 in El Paso.

Feature photo: Junior guard Janis Peterson  drives the ball to the basket during a home game Saturday afternoon at the Super Pit. The Mean Green lost 67-54 against Louisiana Tech. Peterson was the high scorer for North Texas with 16, followed by Hyder with 13 and McCoy with 11. Photo by James Coreas / Staff Photographer 

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