The Texas Southern women’s basketball team made a valiant effort to win the contest but fell short in the closing seconds as they fell 53-50 in the regular season finale against Southern at the M.O. Campbell Center.
The first quarter was evenly played as Southern led by four early but TSU regained the lead and led all the until the 1:18 mark. Te’Aire Hambrick tied the contest with 58 seconds left but SU ended the quarter ahead 14-12 after a pair of free throws from Tyneisha Mitchell.
TSU would get physical in the second quarter and fought back for a 20-19 lead with 3:39 remaining after a basket from Ataiya Bridges. Both teams would trade leads with 2:15 left but SU closed the half on a 4-0 run to lead 27-22 at the half.
Southern would open the third quarter on a tear and outscored TSU 14-6 over the first 6:46 to break out a 13-point lead. SU would lead by double digits up until 1:12 left as Hambrick nailed a trey for a 43-35 deficit. SU would respond with two free throws over the final 34 seconds to close out the quarter ahead 45-35.
TSU took the quarter break speech by Cynthia Cooper-Dyke to heart as they went to work in the fourth quarter. Three straight layups by TSU closed the gap to 45-41 with 7:24 left as SU finally answered with a free throw with 6:49 left. A scoring drought for three-plus minutes would ensue for both teams as SU broke it on a free throw by Genovea Johnson at the 3:18 mark.
Demetrius Lewis picked the best time to hit her lone shot attempt of the game as she drained a three-pointer to close within 47-44 with 2:58 left. SU would miss the next basket and Quatera Limbrick answered with a layup to draw within 47-46.
However, both teams would turn the ball over the next minute and SU’s Genovea Johnson hit a jumper for a 49-46 lead with 58 seconds left. Namiko Adams answered with a big basket to stay within one but Ataiya Bridges came up with a huge steal and jumper with 35 seconds left to claim a 51-50 lead.
After a timeout, SU’s Johnson drove to the basket to regain a 51-50 advantage and TSU committed a costly turnover seconds later. SU’s Metcalf was fouled and hit 1-of-2 free throws with 17 seconds left for a 52-50 margin. Unfortunately, TSU never received a chance to win on the offensive end as they committed a turnover on the inbounds pass which led to a foul. SU’s Kayla Watson hit 1-of-2 free throws for a 53-50 lead with 14 seconds left. TSU would miss a layup attempt but got the ball back for a chance to tie with eight seconds left but turned the ball over late for another missed opportunity.
Hambrick and Adams led TSU with 11 and 10 points, respectively while Britnee Gabriel grabbed a team-high seven rebounds.