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Women’s basketball misses chance to take division lead
Tim Cato / Senior Staff Writer
The UNT women’s basketball team missed out on an opportunity to take the Sun Belt West Division lead in a 76-62 loss to Western Kentucky University on Thursday.
“It was our worst effort of the year, easily,” head coach Mike Petersen said. “Not taking any credit away from Western Kentucky, I thought they played very well. I thought we got outworked, I thought we got outplayed, I thought we got outcoached.”
The Mean Green (9-14, 8-6) led 14-7 early, but Western Kentucky (16-5, 9-3) outscored UNT 28-11 in the final nine minutes of the first half and UNT couldn’t muster a response.
“I didn’t think we responded at all,” Petersen said. “I just thought we got punched in the nose and our eyes watered a little bit and that was it.”
Petersen said it was surprising to see this type of effort out of his team after its win on Sunday. UNT defeated West Division-leading Arkansas State University (12-11, 9-5), and when Arkansas State lost again on Wednesday, it set up the chance to take the West Division lead.
With the loss to WKU, UNT remains a game behind Arkansas State with six conference games left in the season.
Junior guard Laura McCoy said the team’s offense never really found any rhythm. It shot 35 percent from the floor and 27 percent from behind the three-point line.
“I think we were just disorientated for a lot of the time,” she said. “No one knew what plays we were running, we were doing our own thing and we had to end up chucking some shots at the end of the shot clock.”
Although UNT recovered enough to outscore WKU 33-32 in the second half, it could never mount a synchronized comeback effort.
“We just didn’t execute as well as we wanted to,” freshman guard Loryn Goodwin said. “It’s just disappointing for us. You just want something so bad and you come out and don’t perform how you want to.”
Over the weekend
On Saturday, the Mean Green will face Florida International University (14-9, 8-6), which is coming off of a win against Florida Atlantic University on Wednesday.
UNT beat FIU 70-68 on the road earlier in the season as a part of its five-game win streak. In that game, freshman forward Alexis Hyder hit a game-winning bucket with 25 seconds left.
The Mean Green will look to get its offense back on track for the 5 p.m. tip-off at the Super Pit.