Early Lead Squandered as Fish Drop Game to Bobcats

Written By: Michael Brown, Palm Beach Atlantic University SID

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.- What once looked like a positive outcome turned quickly into a defeat as the Palm Beach Atlantic University women’s basketball team was unable to hold off the pesky St. Thomas University Bobcats on Tuesday night at the Rubin Arena. Trailing by eight points at the half, the visiting Bobcats took control late in the game and take a 54-50 victory to Miami.

The first-half featured two sizable offensive runs by both teams which left fans wondering who might come out on top in the up-and-down styles of both teams. In the early going, it looked as if STU (8-4) might run away with the game as they pushed their early lead to as many as eight points when Carissa Staiano nailed a three-point basket with just under 14 minutes left to play as the Bobcats led 10-2.

The Fish would put together a run of their own in the coming plays as PBA rallied for a 16-1 run to close out the half and give themselves a 29-21 cushion heading into halftime.

Defensively the Sailfish were strong in the opening 20 minutes of play by limiting the Bobcats to a 24.2% (8-33) shooting percentage while connecting on 10-of-29 shots on their end.

The second-half featured more competitive play with both teams hitting the floor on multiple occasions, both wanting the win.

Behind the strong play of STU guard Cindy Castrillon, the Bobcats pushed their advantage to as high as nine points in the second half with 4:29 left to play. The Fish would chip away at the lead and close the gap to only two points when sophomore Kim Kelly (Missouri City, Texas) raced down the floor to score a layup with only 39 seconds remaining.

Unable to force a timely turnover, the Sailfish would fall in the end as the Bobcats did what any strong team does: hit free-throws.

Sophomore Brooke Burgess (Palm City, Fla.) once again led the way for PBA on both ends of the floor as she finished the night with 15 points and 17 rebounds while hitting 4-of-8 shots from the field and 7-of-9 from the charity stripe.

Also reaching double-figures for PBA was fellow sophomores Haley Adcock and Melissa Perez with 11 points each. Perez (Miami Lakes, Fla.) put together a solid overall performance from the point guard position as she connected on 5-of-9 shots from the field while also forcing three steals on the defensive end.

Adcock and Kelly led the way on defense as they each contributed three blocks apiece as the Sailfish successfully swatted nine total shots on the evening.

PBA will next travel to the University of Tampa on Saturday, January 26th for a men’s and women’s basketball double-header with the Spartans. The women’s teams will square off at 2 pm followed by the men’s teams at 4 pm.

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