SAGINAW, MICH. – Junior center Stephanie Rogers (Mentor, Ohio/Mentor) scored a game-high 24 points but it wasn't enough to get the Lake Erie College women's basketball team past host Saginaw Valley State Saturday in a back-and-forth affair afternoon (Jan. 22) as Kelly Wesp University hit four free throws in the final 20 seconds give the Cardinals a 68-65 win.
The game featured 12 ties and 15 lead changes, including three of each in the final three minutes.
Rogers scored 14 points and grabbed five rebounds in the first half as the Storm (2-13, 1-8 GLIAC) built an 11-point lead in the first 16 minutes of the game. But the Cardinals came back with a 13-0 lead, capped by back-to-back three-pointers by Kristen Green to retake the lead. The teams went back-and-forth during the final minute of the half with the Storm taking a 38-36 lead into the locker room.
The teams remained even through most of the second half before the Cardinals (5-11, 3-7 GLIAC) stretched out to a seven-point lead (58-51) with 7:40 to go.
A 9-0 run by Lake Erie allowed the Storm to regain the upper hand with 4:34 left on a jumper by freshman Kiarra Jones (Twinsburg, Ohio/Lutheran East). The Cardinals scored six of the next seven points before lay-ups by Rogers and Jones gave the Storm a 65-64 lead with just 41 seconds left.
Wesp was fouled with 20 seconds to go and hit both free throws to put the home team up one and after a Lake Erie turnover, hit two more with nine seconds to go to make it a three-point game. The Storm was unable to get off a final shot.
In the final game of a four-game road trip, Rogers scored her two dozen points on nine-of-18 shooting from the field and hit all six free throw attempts. She finished with eight rebounds and blocked five shots – all in the second half. Sophomore Sarah Wojciechowski (Randolph, Ohio/Waterloo) was only other player in double figures for the Storm, scoring 10 points. She was one of three Lake Erie players with five rebounds, as the Storm won the battle on the boards 39-37.
Saginaw Valley snapped a three-game losing streak and won for just the second time in nine games. Greene scored 12 points to lead the Cardinals while Cheritee Green finished with nine points and grabbed a game-high nine rebounds.
Lake Erie outshot the Saginaw Valley 43.4%-33.8%, but the Cardinals hit nine three-pointers compared to just five for the Storm. Lake Erie also committed four more turnovers (25-21).
The Storm returns home Thursday night, Jan. 27, to host the University of Findlay at 8 p.m.