WILBERFORCE - Lourdes got off to a slow start offensively on Saturday afternoon and could not recover, despite cutting a 22-point deficit to seven in the second half, as the Gray Wolves suffered their first loss of the season 89-75 to Wilberforce at the Health and Fitness Center in Wilberforce, Ohio.
"Wilberforce put forth great effort today and really got after it," head coach Zareth Gray stated after the game. "We had way too many turnovers the first half and that is what killed us."
The Gray Wolves committed 23 first half turnovers, including 20 in the first 16 minutes of the game which was combined with 2-of-14 shooting from the floor during the span. Wilberforce took a 35-13 lead with 6:02 to play in the first half before Lourdes went on a run.
Nine straight points, capped by a three-pointer from Lauren Tilden (Ravenna, Ohio/Ravenna H.S.) pulled the Gray Wolves within 13, before they went into the locker room trailing 41-26.
The Bulldogs pushed the lead back to 22 three minutes into the second half before the Gray Wolves tried to answer again. Thirteen straight points over five minutes, including six from Tiffani Blackman (Toledo, Ohio/Start H.S.), pulled Lourdes within single digits, 52-43, with just under 12 minutes to play.
Again Wilberforce answered, scoring six straight to push the advantage back to 15. The lead grew to 17, 75-58, with five minutes to play, before one last push from Lourdes. A 12-2 spurt, including five straight points from Ty Ali (Chicago, Ill./Rich South H.S.) pulled the Gray Wolves within 77-70 with just over two minutes remaining, but that was as close as Lourdes would get the rest of the way.
"We had some good effort in the second half and moved the ball around," Gray added. "Unfortunately we got in a funk in the first half and dug ourselves too big of a hole."
Tilden led five Gray Wolves in double figures with 13 points while Blackman and Ali added 12 points each. Tarynn Hampton (Saint Louis, Mo./Alton H.S.) tallied 10 points as did Emily Orsini (Akron, Ohio/Archbishop Hoban H.S.) off of the bench. Hampton also pulled down a team-leading nine rebounds as Lourdes outrebounded Wilberforce 47-37, including a 19-12 advantage on the offensive glass.
Deidra Brown led Wilberforce (1-1) with 20 points while Kendra Moss had a double-double with 11 points and 12 boards. The Bulldogs shot 48% from the floor for the game, including better than 53% in the first half.
Lourdes (1-1) will look to bounce back on Tuesday evening as the Gray Wolves continue their road trip with a 7 p.m. game at Spring Arbor.