BOWLING GREEN – The visiting University of Central Florida erased a late-game double-figure deficit, rallying for a 59-56 win over the Bowling Green State University women's basketball team Friday night (Jan. 4). The non-conference game was held at the Stroh Center.
With the win, UCF improves to 6-8 on the season, and the Knights have won three consecutive games. The Falcons end non-conference play with a 9-4 record.
The Falcons led by as many as 15 points early in the second half, and still held a double-digit lead with just over five minutes left, after a steal and layup by senior Allison Papenfuss gave the hosts a 53-43 advantage.
But, after that Papenfuss bucket, which came with 5:04 on the clock, the Falcons would not score again until the final seconds of the game. UCF went on a 15-0 run, with Gevenia Carter scoring eight of those 15 points, to take the lead for good.
That run included a game-tying three-point field goal by Meghan Keough with 3:15 remaining, and a tiebreaking triple by Carter. Carter, who had a game-high 21 points, actually thought her shot with 1:02 left was off target, charging toward the hoop in an attempt to get the rebound. But, there was no rebound, as the ball found the bottom of the net to put the Knights up, 56-53.
The Falcons had two shots miss the mark on the next possession, and UCF rebounds the ball with just over half a minute remaining. The home team fouled Kayli Keough, who hit a pair of free-throw attempts with 28.0 seconds remaining.
BGSU's next possession saw junior Jillian Halfhill and senior Chrissy Steffen each miss three-point tries, but the Falcons came up with the offensive rebound on both occasions. Halfhill tracked down Steffen's miss in the right corner, whirled and fired a contested shot that was on target with 5.5 seconds left.
A review of the shot determined that Halfhill was indeed behind the three-point line, and the Falcons were within two points, at 58-56.
BGSU fouled Kayli Keough before the Knights could inbound the ball, and Keough made her first free-throw try for a three-point lead. She missed her second shot, and Steffen corralled the rebound. As the clock wound down, the senior fired a pass ahead to redshirt junior Alexis Rogers, but Rogers' hurried three-point try from NBA range was off the mark, and the Knights had the road win.
The Falcons committed 21 turnovers on the night, tying a season high, and UCF had a 23-12 advantage in points off turnovers. Additionally, the visitors shot 50.0 percent in the second half en route to a 40.7% success rate for the night, while holding BGSU to a 32.0% second-half rate and a 37.5% field-goal percentage in the game.
Carter was the lone UCF player in double digits in the scoring column. Erika Jones scored eight points off the bench, while Kayli Keough and Andrea Hines had seven points apiece.
Rogers had a BGSU-high 11 points, and also had seven rebounds and a team-best four steals. Steffen scored 10 points and led the Falcons with nine rebounds, as BG held a 36-33 edge on the boards.
Halfhill had nine points and eight rebounds for the Brown and Orange, while fifth-year senior Danielle Havel scored eight points.
BGSU continues a season-long five-game homestand with three games in a seven-day span, beginning with the Mid-American Conference opener vs. Kent State University on Thursday (Jan. 10). Tipoff is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. at the Stroh Center