Friday, December 17, 2010

Bellarmine falls to UT-Permian Basin in Dustdevil Classic opener

LAREDO, Tex.--The Bellarmine University women's basketball team lost the opening game of the Dustdevil Holiday Classic by the count of 97-83 to the University of Texas-Permian Basin tonight at the Kinesiology Building at Texas A&M International.

Bellarmine (5-4) dug a huge hole for itself right of the gate, falling behind 14-0 in the game's first 3:40. During the stretch, the Knights committed four turnovers and the Falcons hauled in three offensive boards--statistics that would tell the tale of the Knights' undoing. For the game, UTPB scored 29 points off 22 Bellarmine turnovers, and and the Falcons hauled in 22 offensive rebounds to outscore the Knights 22-11 in second chance points.

Despite the early deficit, Bellarmine was able to claw its way back in the game, tying the score 20-20 at the 10-minute mark on a 3-pointer by Lauren Jones. The Knights even took the lead 22-20 on a pair of Kirsten Delph free throws.  However, a quick 9-0 run by the Falcons put UTPB back up by seven, and they took a 45-40 lead into the locker room.

In the second half, the Falcons again started quickly and built their lead to 15 at the 14:30 mark.  Again, Bellarmine fought back and took a brief lead with just over six minutes remaining. However, the Knights turned the ball over on four consecutive possessions, and the Falcons went from two down to up by eight in a span of just one minute and 31 seconds.

Bright spots for the Knights included Chelsea Hawkins, who had her best game in a Bellarmine uniform with 22 points, and Jones, who continued her steady play with 25 points.  Freshman Therese Montano chipped  in with 12 rebounds and five assists in just 16 minutes of action.

UT-Permian Basin (9-2) used a more balanced scoring attack, with four players scoring in double figures, led by Teisha King's 23.

Bellarmine faces the host school, Texas A&M International, tomorrow in round two action of the Dustdevil Holiday Classic. Tip is scheduled for 1 p.m. (ET).

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