BOWLING GREEN — For the second game in a row, the Bowling Green State University women’s basketball team struggled in the third quarter.
Those struggles Sunday cost the Falcons in a 71-57 nonconference loss to Canisius at the Stroh Center.
Three days after getting outscored 17-4 in the third quarter of an overtime win at Robert Morris, BG was pummeled 19-7 by the Golden Griffins in the same quarter in this game. That turned a four-point Falcons halftime lead into an eight-point deficit they were not able to overcome.
Canisius College's Maria Wech is stripped of the ball by Bowling Green's Carly Santoro during Sunday's game at the Stroh Center.
“Things snowballed the wrong way,” Bowling Green coach Jennifer Roos said of the third. “We’re better than what we showed today. …
“I have kids who I know are upset about this one because, if they had to do it over again, they would make those shots and not lose kids on back-doors.
“But we just couldn’t get it done today.”
Sydney Lambert scored 12 points to lead the Falcons (3-1), and Jane Uecker added 10 points and eight rebounds.
Sara Hinriksdottir finished with 20 points, eight rebounds, and seven assists for Canisius (2-1). Maria Welch had 12 and Margret Halfdanardottir added 11.
Bowling Green held the lead for the vast majority of the first half. The Falcons led 17-16 after the first, then went on a 13-7 run to build a 30-23 advantage at the 6:24 mark of the second.
But the Golden Griffins did not go away, and BG needed a 3-pointer by Liberty-Benton graduate Rachel Myers at the halftime buzzer to lead 39-35 at the break.
Then, disaster struck.
Bowling Green missed its first nine field-goal attempts of the third, and the Falcons did not get a point until Oak Harbor product Andrea Cecil made the second of two free throws at the 4:18 mark.
“We just couldn’t get momentum,” Uecker said. “I think we wanted to be a little more aggressive than we were, because our bread-and-butter is getting to the line.
“But we weren’t doing that in the third quarter.”
Worse, Canisius make plenty of shots. While BG made just 3-of-15 from the field, with misses on all four 3-point attempts, and went just 1-for-3 from line, the Golden Griffins connected on 5-of-10 from the floor, including 3-of-7 on 3s and, 6-of-9 free throws to turn that four-point deficit into a 54-46 lead.
“The defensive struggles were the start of [our problems],” Uecker said. “The coaches preached in practice to keep our heads on a swivel, but we kept getting lost on where our man was.
“And they kept getting back-doors on us.”
The Falcons tried to shoot their way back into in the fourth and failed, making just 1-of-11 on 3s in that period and 4-of-17 overvall. For the game, Bowling Green was just 7-of-35 (20 percent) from distance for the game.
“They didn’t go in; that’s my only complaint,” Roos said of her team’s 3-point shooting. “We had good looks, but we’ve made those shots in the past three games.”
BG came no closer than six points in the fourth, and the group was disappointed with the loss that marred a 3-0 start.
“I’m really upset about it,” Uecker said. “We felt we really, really had something to prove. …
“I’m so excited for practice, and I’m so excited for Florida. I can’t wait to get back into the gym and get ready.”
NOTES: Bowling Green assistant coach Nick Moore, a former Canisius assistant, injured his back during morning shootaround and was not at the game. … The Falcons will next play in the FAU Thanksgiving Tournament in Boca Raton, Fla., on Friday and Saturday. The team’s next game at the Stroh Center will be Nov. 28 against Valparaiso.
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