UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, Ohio – Late life bought Lake Erie five more minutes of streak time, but the Storm went from cold to colder in overtime as the Ursuline Arrows snapped LEC's early-season unbeaten run with a 71-66 victory on Sunday night.
LEC shot 30.4 percent (21-of-69) from the field for the game. Prior to Sunday's tilt in University Heights, the Storm had yielded more than 60 points just once this season.
Ursuline's victory marked its first in the series with LEC since 2009. The game marked the end of Lake Erie's non-conference schedule.
With the host Arrows draining 8-of-14 at the outset of the game, Ursuline bolted to a 20-13 lead over the first 12 minutes of play. Lake Erie went just 4-of-17 from the floor over that stretch. Strong defense and a nice performance at the free-throw line would help the Storm whittle its deficit down to one point (25-24) by the three-minute mark. But LEC's shooting woes continued until the final buzzer of the half, and the Green & White went into the break trailing by eight, 32-24.
Lake Erie was outshot, 46 percent to 25 percent, over the game's first 20 minutes, and LEC didn't have an answer for freshman guard Jenny Grigsby who went 5-for-6 from the floor in scoring 12 points. The Storm got seven points and three assists from Sami Narducci in the first; the team also got five points and seven rebounds from Jodie Jindra. Those two went a combined 4-of-9 from the field in the first; the rest of the team went just 3-of-19.
Chrissy Delaney knocked down the first shot of the second stanza, but after that it was all-Ursuline. The Arrows went on a 15-6 run to up their lead to 15 (47-32) by the 15-minute mark.
The midpoint of the second half saw the Storm get within 10 when Jackie Murray followed up a 3-pointer with a layup on LEC's next possession. Lake Erie got within seven (56-49) with a Chloe Irish bucket at 7:46. The Storm got the lead down to five (59-54) on a Daija Jones three-ball at 5:07. A minute later LEC still trailed by five, but the Storm then got a basket from Jodie Jindra and a 3-pointer by Murray, and the game was knotted at 61-61 at the 2:42-mark.
The Arrows then exchanged one point for four in taking a 65-62 lead into the game's final 10 seconds. With three seconds remaining in regulation, Irish was fouled on a 3-point attempt. A 58.8 percent (10-of-17) foul shooter coming into the game, the senior forward nailed the three clutch charity tosses to send the game into overtime. Irish would finish the game 9-of-11 at the line. But her trio of foul shots was a high-water mark for the Storm which would go a combined 1-for-14 from the floor and the foul line in the overtime.
Ursuline shot 41.8 percent (23-for-55) from the floor over the 45 minutes. The Arrows were a minus-10 in turnover margin, committing 33 to LEC's 23. Grigsby finished the game with 17 points and was one of three Arrows to notch 13 or more.
Lake Erie's offense was led by Murray and Irish who each registered 13 points. Sami Narducci added 11 points to go with five assists and a game-high and career-best six steals. Jodie Jindra and Kaeding Skelton each posted nine points and nine boards on the evening.
With the conclusion of non-conference play, Lake Erie now heads into Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference action. That action is slated to get underway on Thursday when LEC visits Ferris State (Mich.) in the front end of a two-game series in Michigan. The Storm will then travel to Grand Valley State for a Saturday noon game. Thursday's game against the Bulldogs is scheduled for a 6 p.m. tip.
Notes: Lake Erie went into the game forcing an average of 27.0 turnovers per game, up from 22.7 per game in 2012-13. The Storm forced a season-high 33 turnovers on Sunday. … Chloe Irish went into the game averaging 10.0 points per contest. She has scored 28 points over LEC's last two games. … The Storm shot 59.4 percent (19-of-32) from the free-throw line on Sunday. The team is now shooting 59.3 percent (99-of-167) from the line on the season. … Ursuline is playing most of its home games at JCU's DeCarlo Center due to its O'Brien Athletic Center being damaged by a tornado in July.
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