(Photo by Chris Pobst, Staff)
SIKESTON -- The Sikeston Lady Bulldogs shot 23 percent from the floor and fell to the visiting Jackson Lady Indians 50-25 at the Sikeston Field House on Monday night.
Tyangela Gibson led Sikeston with 10 points and four steals while Quesha Howard added eight.
Jackson's Dru Haertling led all scorers with 20 points. Connor King chipped in with 14.
"We couldn't hit anything. That was the problem," Sikeston head coach Matt Schonhoff said. "Jackson's man-to-man defense caused some of that, but when we did have open looks we couldn't hit."
The Lady Indians didn't fare much better in terms of field goal percentage putting up a 26 percent average. Jackson, made up for their poor shooting with second and third chance opportunities they received from crashing the boards and going 17 of 23 from the free throw line.
In contrast, Sikeston put up 10 less shots than their opponent and went to the line just four times.
"Us getting offensive rebounds kind of slowed them down from getting out and running like they like to do," Jackson head coach Tyler Abernathy said.
Jackson's size inside created problems for the Lady Bulldogs in many cases. Not only were the Lady Indians able to capitalize with stick backs, but they also limited Sikeston's chances of getting out in transition -- something the Lady Bulldogs live and die from.
"One of the keys we had going in was win the board game," Schonhoff said. "If we were able to do that, we would be able to get out in transition and run and try to wear them out a little bit."
Backed by a balanced scoring attack, Jackson crept out to a 16-5 lead after the first quarter. The Lady Indians outscored Sikeston 9-8 in the second to take a 25-13 advantage into halftime.
The Lady Bulldogs committed 13 turnovers in the first half while shooting 26 percent in the first two quarters. Jackson, on the other hand, shot 29 percent (8 of 27) and coughed it up nine times.
"It was big for us to hit some outside shots to stretch their zone out a bit," Abernathy said. "Connor (King) and Megan (Williams) was able to get a little more space inside and do some things. When we make shots from the outside, we're pretty difficult to guard."
Two baskets by Howard to start the second half cut Jackson's lead below 10 for the first time since the opening seconds of the second quarter. Later in the quarter, Howard sank one of two free throws to make it a 29-18 game but Jackson rolled off eight unanswered to end the period and grab a commanding 37-18 lead.
Howard scored all of Sikeston's five points in the third while the Lady Indians put up 12.
"I thought our defense was okay at times," said Schonhoff. "But, the main thing was, we couldn't hit anything. If we're one and done then we're in trouble."
Jackson continued to pour it on in the fourth as Sikeston got as close as 17 points when Mikala Nichols laid one in with 4:12 left to go. Other than a free throw by Howard, Sikeston did not score again.
Sikeston (13-8) will travel to Charleston on Thursday to take on the Lady Bluejays.
JACKSON (50) -- Dru Haertling 20, Rachel Hodo 6, Connor King 14, Danielle Daume 2, Megan Williams 6, Allie Halter 2. FG 15 FT 17-23 F 10 (3-pointers: Haertling 2, Hodo 2. Fouled out: none.)
SIKESTON (25) -- Tyangela Gibson 10, Quesha Howard 8, Leah Little 3, Mikala Nichols 2, Yalonda Johnson 2. FG 11 FT 2-4 F 15 (3-pointers: Little 1. Fouled out: none.)