Women’s basketball falls to ETSU, 75-65
A sluggish second half sinks the JU women’s basketball team in a loss to ETSU, 75-65, in Johnson City, Tenn. on Monday night in Atlantic Sun Conference action.

Shawn Randall scored 21 points lead to the Lady Buccaneers (16-10, 13-4 A-Sun), who shot 50 percent from the floor in the second half (17-34) and hit 5-of-8 attempts from beyond the arc

The Dolphins (11-14, 6-10) took a 14-point lead into the locker room at half time, but only managed to go 7-for-28 from the floor and make one three-pointer (1-9) in the second half. Sophomore guard Maggie Wilson was immune and finished with 14 points to pace JU.

“We just can’t play a full game right now,” said JU head coach Jill Dunn. “Our team has started bad the last few games so we fixed that, but the funk went into the second half tonight. We need to find a way to play a complete game soon or we will hurt ourselves in the final part of the schedule.”

ETSU earned its 10th straight win against the Dolphins by scoring 34 points in the paint and bouncing back from a slow first half to shoot 40.9 percent from the floor (27-66). The Dolphins went 40 percent from the floor (16-40) in the first half, including going 4-of-6 from three-point land before hitting their bad streak.

Trailing by 14 to start the second half, the Lady Buccaneers scored 13 of the first 15 points to cut the deficit to 46-43 (12:57) on a three-pointer by Natalie Pickwell. The Dolphins extended the lead back to seven a couple of seconds later as Wilson made three straight free throws for a 52-45 advantage.

Junior guard Ashanti Williams gave the Dolphins a 60-53 advantage with less than 10 minutes remaining, but ETSU used a 9-1 run to regain the lead. Pickwell cut the lead to one on a three-pointer during the run, while a jumper by Tara Davis gave them a 62-61 lead (7:24). The Lady Buccaneers outscored the Dolphins, 13-4, in the final seven minutes to get the win.

Senior guard GiGi Thomas scored 12 points for JU, while senior forward Taneskei Richardson tallied another double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds.

In the first half, the teams would keep it close until JU busted out a 12-0 stretch, capped on a jumper from freshman forward Jane’l Osborne, for a 27-16 lead (6:55). Less than minute later, a layup by Gwen Washington pulled the ETSU deficit to 29-23, but Richardson used a layup at 2:21 to close out an 18-2 run to give JU a 37-25 advantage. Thomas hit a three-pointer with one second left to hand the Dolphins a 44-30 lead at half time.

Pickwell got 13 points for ETSU, while Davis and Latisha Baker each finished with 12 points on their senior night. Baker also added 10 rebounds.

The Dolphins look to bounce back starting Friday with Kennesaw State at 5 p.m. in the Veterans Memorial Arena.