Sports NewsCalendar

Mayfield's Mutterings -- Current posting: Oops... I did it again

Sports News Elsewhere (fresh daily from the Web)

Friday, Dec. 22

Cold-shooting second half leads to Braves' loss to Illinois          Send a link to a friend

[DEC. 22, 2006]  PEORIA -- Seventh-year Bradley women's basketball head coach Paula Buscher was pleased with her team's defensive effort, calling it probably the best defensive game of the season, but the Braves scored a season-low 41 points and shot 22.6 percent from the field in a 57-41 loss to Illinois on Thursday night at Robertson Memorial Field House.

Despite shooting just 29.6 percent in the first half, Bradley held a 21-18 lead at the break, thanks in part to a stingy defense that held the Illini to 21.4 percent shooting in the first 20 minutes. The second half was a different story as Illinois managed to score 39 points and the Braves missed the first 17 shots of the period en route to a 17.1 field goal percentage (6-for-35) in the half.

Bradley (4-7 overall) trailed 12-11 after an Amy Peters basket with 11:40 but would go scoreless over the next 6:30 of play. Illinois failed to capitalize on the Braves' offensive woes, scoring just four points during the BU drought. Bradley closed the half with a 9-2 run that included a 3-point play by sophomore Kelly Krumwiede and a pair of Devyn Flanagan buckets in the final 1:40 as the Braves took a 21-18 lead at the break.

The Illini (10-2 overall) scored the first seven points of the second half to take a 25-21 lead as Bradley went scoreless for the first 4:29 to open the half. With Bradley trailing by two points, Illinois used a 12-1 run that included a pair of baskets from both Chelsea Gordon and Erin Wigley to take a 39-26 lead with 8:57 remaining, all before the Braves connected on one field goal.

The Braves missed their first 17 shots of the second half, before Jen Brown's runner in the lane with 8:31 to play and a Felicia Nekmouche basket cut the Illini lead to 39-30. Lori Bjork scored seven consecutive points for Illinois during a 9-2 Illini spurt that extended the Illinois lead to 16 points (48-32) with 4:05 to play. Bradley cut the deficit to 11 points on a Devyn Flanagan 3-pointer with 2:49 remaining, but Illinois would score seven of the final nine points of the game to put the finishing touches on a 57-41 victory over the Braves.

[to top of second column]

Bradley shot 17.1 percent from the field in the second half (6-for-35) and finished the night with a 22.6 field goal percentage. The Braves tied a season low with two 3-pointers and shot just 13.3 percent (2-for-15) from the beyond the arc. Flanagan was the only Bradley player to connect on more than two field goal attempts, hitting 6-of-18, and finished with a team-best 14 points. Senior Erika Nelson battled foul trouble a good part of the game and finished with seven points, while fellow senior Amy Peters added six points and six rebounds off the bench.

Illinois had three players reach double figures, paced by Bjork's game-high 16 points. Danyel Crutcher had 11 points to go along with her game-high 15 rebounds, while Jenna Smith was also in double figures with 11 points. Bradley held the Illini to less than 60 for just the third time this season, but Illinois entered the game surrendering just 56.4 points per game and held the Braves to their lowest point total since a 36-point effort at Missouri State on Feb. 3, 1996.

Bradley finished the nonconference portion of the schedule with a 4-7 record and will open Missouri Valley Conference play with three consecutive road games beginning Dec. 29 at Northern Iowa at 7:05 p.m. in Cedar Falls, Iowa.

[Box score]

[Bradley University athletics news release]

LDN sports sponsored by:


< Sports index

Back to top


News | Sports | Business | Rural Review | Teaching & Learning | Home and Family | Tourism | Obituaries

Community | Perspectives | Law & Courts | Leisure Time | Spiritual Life | Health & Fitness | Teen Scene
Calendar | Letters to the Editor