Tabor women drop two at home

ORIGINALLY WRITTEN ERIC CLARK

With three starters fouling out with more than five minutes remaining in Saturday’s 53-43 loss to the Ottawa Braves, Bluejay head coach Rusty Allen felt the frustration of coming up short.


“Your hands are tied,” Allen said. “What we would have liked to do is go try and create some easy offense off of our defense, but we couldn’t take that chance.”


Tabor’s top two scorers, Rachelle Speers and Angela Kroeker, fouled out just under the 10-minute mark. Becky Jons fouled out later.


Tabor’s troubles began after the Braves took a 23-14 lead at the 7:51 mark. Ottawa shot 50 percent from the field and from behind the arc in the first half.


But the Jays stormed back and narrowed the margin to five at the end of the first half, 31-26.


After intermission, fans might have thought the Tabor maintenance staff had placed glass lids over the rims as the Bluejays and the Braves shot 14.3 and 8.3 percent from the field, respectively.


Combined, the two teams made only seven shots in the second half.


The Bluejays flirted with closing the Ottawa advantage throughout the half, but were thwarted by the Braves.


Despite the loss, Allen was pleased with his team’s improvement from Thursday’s game against Sterling College, especially in the turnover department.


“The turnover situation is an improvement,” Allen said. “Ottawa struggled, but was rolling. They had built their confidence with some recent games and with a win against Bethel.”


Tabor’s Rachelle Speers and Kathryn Troutt each had 11 points in the loss.


The Jays also got a boost from the bench. Jessica Prock was 3-for-9 from the field to pace the pine players with 11 points. Prock and company combined for 22 of the Bluejays’ 43 points.


“Jessica’s minutes have been limited,” Allen said. “But without her playing well off the bench we wouldn’t even have come close in the game.”


According to Allen, fatigue played a major role in the loss.


“We were side-by-side all night,” Allen said. “We couldn’t get people cut off. We went to a zone because we weren’t quick on our feet. You don’t have any nights off, every game we play, against most conference teams, we’ve got a chance to win, but so do they.”


Sterling-Sterling’s Kristina Barrow scored 32 points and pulled down 13 rebounds against the Bluejays Thursday night at home. The Jays lost the lopsided affair, 67-43.


Tabor was held to just 10 points in the first half.


Despite turning the ball over 31 times in the game, Tabor was able to chip away at the Warrior lead. Carmen Hein and Rachelle Speers each had eight points.


Coming-The Bluejays are 6-10 overall and 2-4 in the KCAC. Tabor travels to Salina on Thursday night to battle Kansas Wesleyan at 6 p.m. and then hosts KCAC rival Bethel College Saturday night at 5 p.m.

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