Rapid Reaction: CMU 73, Saint Joseph's 71
Following a 62-51 loss on the road to the Purdue Boilermakers that ended a five-game winning streak, the Central Michigan women's basketball team returned to McGuirk Arena and looked to begin a new winning streak.
The Chippewas found their new winning streak as they defeated the Saint Joseph's Hawks 73-71 in overtime Friday night.
Finishing strong without Cotton
At halftime, junior forward Tinara Moore and senior forward Jewel Cotton were a combined 8-for-14 with 22 points, 6-for-7 from the free-throw line and nine rebounds.
Cotton opened up the second half with a layup, giving her 15 points. But a little over halfway through the third quarter, she was on the ground and in pain. Her left knee took the hit, and she needed assistance getting off the court. She tore her left ACL on Nov. 28, 2014 in a regular season game against Oregon. It is unknown whether or not she re-tore her left ACL.
The team was hurting without the leadership and scoring ability from the Harper Woods native. The game was tied up at 50 a piece when the Hawks went on a 12-0 run from the 8:04 mark to the 3:09 mark in the fourth quarter. It was the Hawks' largest lead of the night.
But CMU came from 12 points down to force overtime, including a 3-pointer by sophomore guard Presley Hudson with two seconds left in regulation.
After a back-and-forth overtime period, CMU came out on top after a buzzer-beating layup by Hudson. She led the Chippewas with 20 points, seven rebounds and three steals.
Down a player
With 46 seconds left before the end of the first quarter, junior guard Cassie Breen was knocked hard to the ground after she was called for a blocking foul. Head Coach Sue Guevara went over and made sure she was alright, but it took Breen a few minutes to get on her feet.
Breen left the court for a few minutes, but returned to the huddle at the end of the first quarter. She didn't come back to the game until the 6:05 mark in the second quarter. She finished the game with 14 points and four rebounds.
Starting the 2Q strong
The Chippewas were down 18-16 at the end of the first quarter, but CMU began the second quarter in a big way.
Cotton began the quarter on a 5-0 run of her own, but it eventually became a 10-0 run. After two made free-throws by junior guard Aleah Swary, the Chippewas quickly got the ball back after a missed shot by the Hawks. It took three offensive rebounds to get in in the net, but Moore eventually laid it in and was fouled in the process. She completed the 3-point play and put the Chippewas up by eight points.
They scored 18 points in the second quarter.
The Chippewas return to McGuirk Arena on Dec. 19 after a 10-day hiatus to play against Illinois.