Central State Athletic Department
BIRMINGHAM, Alabama – The Lady Marauders of Central State had their season come to an end, losing to Kentucky State, 73-63, in the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) Semifinals on Friday night.
Taking on the top-seeded team in the SIAC West, Central State hung in for the majority of the first half, trailing the Thorobrettes, 21-19, at the 5:10 mark of the second quarter. The CSU offense proceeded to score just 2 points to close the quarter while KSU’s Joymesia Howard sparked her team to an 11-2 run and a 32-21 lead at halftime.
“Against a team like Kentucky State, you have to play for a full forty minutes,” said CSU coach Sheba Harris. “We lost our focus for a moment at the end of the first half and KSU took full advantage of it.”
The Thorobrettes expanded their lead to 18 with a Jamesha Mosley basket at the 5:18 mark of the third quarter. The CSU defense responded by forcing KSU into six turnovers, sparking a 14-3 run to end the quarter.
Down 46-41 at the start of the fourth period, CSU managed to cut the deficit down to one with a Kourtni Perry basket at the 6:18 mark. KSU guard Logan Powell scored the next two baskets and led her team on a 7-2 run to take a 59-53 lead with 4:40 left. CSU continued to fight, cutting the deficit down to 4 with 53 seconds left. After a blown KSU layup, CSU’s Jordyn Bond attempted a three pointer that came up short and KSU hit its next four free throws to gain control of the game. KSU’s Jamesha Mosley helped the Thorobrettes to their seventeenth straight win with nine points in the final 4 minutes to further solidify the victory and trip to the SIAC Championship.
“The ladies did a tremendous job continuing to fight and get back into the game,” Harris said. “We just ran out of energy to close out the game.”
As a team, KSU shot 48% from the field compared to a 35% performance from the Lady Marauders.
Mosley finished with a game-high 22 points while Howard scored 14 points to go with six rebounds. Powell provided 14 points off the bench.
CSU senior Kourtni Perry led the Lady Marauders with 17 points and nine rebounds in the final game of her collegiate career. Sierra Harley recorded 16 points in the loss.
“I am very proud of this group of young ladies. We have come a long way since the beginning of the season and I appreciate all their efforts and dedication,” said Harris. “We made an impression in our first year competing in the SIAC and we are excited about the direction this program is headed. We are not going to hang our heads after tonight’s loss. We are going to continue to build and get better.”
Central State finishes the year with a 14-14 overall mark. Kentucky State improved to 23-3 on the season and will take on Benedict in the SIAC Championship on Saturday.