Cold Shooting Costs ORU in 70-51 Loss
Courtesy: ORU Media Relations
Jaci Bigham was the lone offensive threat for ORU (15-9 overall) on Monday night, finishing with a season-high 23 points. The junior was 9-for-15 from the floor and hit 3-of-4 three-point attempts.
Two-time League Player of the Year Kevi Luper could not recapture the magic of Saturday night, when she scored 41 points and broke the conference’s career scoring record. The junior was 4-for-18 from the field on Monday and scored nine points.
The inside-outside duo of Jill Young and Jennie Sunnarborg combined to lead the Jackrabbits (17-7, 12-1 Summit League to victory. Young finished with 19 points, and Sunnarborg had 18.
ORU conceded the first five points of the game, but it didn’t take long for Jerry Finkbeiner’s club to take a lead. A three-pointer by Bigham, her second in the first six minutes, put ORU on top, 10-9.
It was the home team’s turn to move ahead at the 1:57 mark. A 6-0 run, capped by a Young three-pointer, gave the Jacks a 29-23 lead. They took a 29-26 lead into the halftime break.
ORU shot just 26.5% in the opening half, but 14 SDSU turnovers kept the Golden Eagles in the game.
The start of the second half was a nightmare for ORU. The Jackrabbits opened the period on an 8-0 run, capped by a Steph Paluch three-pointer. The jumper gave the home team a 37-26 lead, their first double-digit advantage, with 17:50 left in the game.
Bigham tried to keep ORU in the game, scoring six straight points midway through the half to whittle the deficit to 43-39. But momentum swung back in SDSU’s favor on a fluke play. Gabrielle Boever, attempting to feed the post, threw a lob past well over the fingertips of her intended target. But the pass was so off target that it went in the goal, giving the Jacks a 46-39 edge with 12:32 left.
That stroke of incredible luck took the wind out of ORU’s sails and started a 10-0 SDSU run. A Leah Dietel layup gave the home side a 53-39 lead with 10:22 left.
The Golden Eagles would never again threaten SDSU. Two Sunnarborg free throws at the 6:05 mark pushed the lead over 20, at 64-44, and the rout was on.
The loss snaps ORU’s five-game regular season winning streak against South Dakota State.
ORU will try to recover on Saturday afternoon, when they welcome Western Illinois to the Mabee Center. Tip-off is scheduled for 2:05 pm CT.