Basketball (W)

Women's Basketball Gets Double-Double From Howard, But Falls to Florida Tech

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ST. AUGUSTINE, FL -- Catawba fell to Florida Tech 62-56 in its opening game of the Flagler Saints Tournament in women’s basketball action on Friday afternoon.  The loss drops the Catawba Indians to 6-5, while the Panthers, who recently fell out of the top 25 poll, improve to 8-3.

Neither team shot well in the opening half that led to a 22-21 Florida Tech lead.  Catawba managed just 26.7% shooting, while Tech hit on a mere 25%.  The Lady Indians fought back from an early 8-2 deficit to hold a couple of one-point leads before the break.

In the second half, the Panthers heated up to hit over 60% (13-of-21) and began to take control.  Florida Tech took a 43-35 edge by the mid-point of the final half.  Catawba got within four with 3:29 to play, but the Panthers surged back ahead by nine at 60-51 with 45 seconds remaining.

A basket by NeKeithia Howard (Macon, GA/Northeast HS) and a three-pointer by Sicilia LoSauro (Oviedo, FL/Oviedo HS) got the Lady Indians within 60-56, but Kristin Heminger hit a pair of free throws with 15 seconds left for Florida Tech.  LoSouro would miss on a three-point attempt with 10 seconds to go on the last Catawba possession.

Howard led Catawba with her fourth double-double of the season, recording 16 points and a dozen rebounds.  LoSauro scored 15 points, reaching double figures for the third time in four games, while Cristi Bartlett (Camden, NC/Camden HS) pulled down 10 rebounds.

Heminger led all scorers with 25 points to lead the Panthers with Kassie Crimi adding a dozen.  Catawba shot just 32.8% in the loss.  The Lady Indians helped stay close with a 52-31 edge on the boards, but had 24 turnovers to 14 for Florida Tech.

Catawba will face host Flagler in Saturday’s consolation game at 3 p.m.  The Saints fell to West Georgia 70-19.

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