MONTGOMERY, Ala. – After a three-week layoff, the Spring Hill College women's basketball team returned to the hardwood versus Auburn University at Montgomery (AUM) on Friday evening for a Southern States Athletic Conference (SSAC) game at the AUM Physical Education Complex only to lose a 71-60 decision to the Warhawks.
The Warhawks (7-5, 3-2 SSAC East) took an early 5-0 lead just three minutes into the contest and held an 8-0 bulge with six minutes gone as the Badgers missed their first six field goal attempts and committed five early turnovers.
By the 10 minute mark of the 1st half, the Badgers trailed 16-6 and saw the hole only get deeper two minutes later with AUM building a 20-8 cushion.
Spring Hill came out of the halftime locker rooms facing a 32-19 deficit after a 1st half where they made just eight baskets while committing 15 turnovers. The Badgers launched a 15-9 run to make it a 41-34 game five minutes into the period and then used two free throws by freshman guard Amee Smith to cut it to just a six-point SHC shortage at 49-43 with 10 minutes to play.
AUM kept the Badgers at arm's length for the next seven minutes rebuilding a 10-point lead at 65-55 with 2:54 on the clock. Buchanan converted on a layup at 2:12 to draw the visitors to within five points at 65-60, but the Badgers could get no closer as AUM converted on 4-for-4 on free throws down the stretch.
Senior forward Sha Sha Buchanan led the Badgers with her third double-double game of the year with 16 points and 14 rebounds as Spring Hill shot 40% (22-55) overall and 45.5% (5-11) from 3-point distance. The Badgers turned the ball over 22 times against just five steals by AUM. Sophomore guard Natalie Harper also dropped in 18 points including three 3-point buckets. Spring Hill out-rebounded their opponents for the 11th time in 13 games in a 42 to 32 tally under the boards.
The Warhawks were paced by Tina Odume with 27 points and Katie Williams with 18 points. AUM shot 43.3% (26-60) from the field including 46.2% (6-13) from long distance while suffering 12 turnovers versus six SHC steals.
The Badgers (4-9, 1-4 SSAC) will host the Faulkner University Lady Eagles (4-9, 2-3 SSAC East) in a cross-divisional match up at the Arthur R. Outlaw Recreation Center on Saturday at 3 p.m.