PIKEVILLE, Ky. – What started as a promising upset bid ended in bitter disappointment for the University of Pikeville women’s basketball team, as it fell 87-76 to No. 2 Shawnee State University at the East Kentucky Expo Center Thursday night.
UPIKE, which led at halftime 45-41, fell to 2-5 on the season and 1-3 in the Mid-South Conference. Shawnee State, meanwhile, saw its record climb to 8-1 (3-1 in MSC).
After Shawnee took an early lead at 9-8, Pikeville went on a 25-11 stretch that took 6:42 off the clock, and when sophomore guard Christin Haney nailed a three from the corner, the home team led 33-20 with 9:17 left.
But Shawnee responded with a five-minute spurt that saw it score 21 of the next 26 to take a 41-38 lead with 1:41 left, but Pikeville scored the last seven to take a 45-41 lead to recess.
Shawnee took the lead early in the second half when senior center Schera Sampson scored inside with 16:09 left to make it 51-49. It never trailed again, pushing the lead to as much as 12 before settling for the 11-point win.
Sampson was rampant for Shawnee State, tallying game-highs in points (24) and rebounds (11) for a double-double despite playing only 27 minutes (including just 10 in the first half) due to early foul trouble. Sampson’s fellow senior Alex Pohl had a big night as well with 18 points and eight boards, four of which came on the offensive end of the floor.
Freshman guard Abby Feutcher ‘s 3-of-5 performance from behind the arc helped her to 14 points in addition to four assists and four steals, while junior Allanah Sheets and freshman Kara Long chipped in 13 and 12 points respectively. The five Shawnee State starters combined for an impressive 81 of the team’s 87 points.
UPIKE’s upset bid was led by an efficient night from junior Callisha Johnson, who came off the bench to lead the Bears with 16 points and shot 60 percent from the floor. Junior guard Jayme Jackson took efficiency to an even greater extreme, going 3-of-3 on three-pointers and dishing out a game-high seven assists against just two turnovers.
Freshman forward Peyton Wright had 14 points and nine rebounds, while sophomore Whitney Jackson added an extra 13 herself.
The Bears are at home again this Saturday at 2pm in another Mid-South Conference game with the University of Rio Grande.