Morehead State deals Panthers third straight loss

On Sunday from Morehead, Ky., Georgia State women’s basketball dropped their third consecutive game with a loss to the Morehead State Eagles by a final of 74˗72. The Panthers fell behind early and fought their way back into the game before coming up just short.

A major highlight of this one for Georgia State was freshman guard Makeba Ponder finishing with 21 points on 7˗9 on three˗pointers.

The game did not start out in auspicious fashion for Georgia State as the Eagles got eight points from Eriel McKee to fuel an early 10˗1 run. After a made free throw from Brittany Logan after being fouled by Mackenzie Arledge, five points from Shay Steele extended the Morehead State advantage to 15˗2 in the early going.

A three point shot from Morgan Jackson along with a pair of made free throws from Kayla Nolan cut the Georgia State deficit to 15˗7 before another layup from Steele maintained the Eagles’ lead at 17˗7.

With the score at 19˗9, the Panthers would embark on an 8˗3 that included four made free throws from Ashley Watson along with two˗point baskets by Miranda Smith and Kayla Nolan. This brought Georgia State within 22˗17 as the lone Morehead State basket came courtesy of a three from McKee.

The Eagles maintained their five point lead at 24˗19 prior to three straight points by McKee. Layups from the Panthers’ Nolan and Watson produced a 4˗0 Georgia State run to close the first half with Morehead State in front, 27˗23.

If the first half was all about defense, the second half was all about offense. Georgia State scored the first four points of the second half to knot the score at 27. This tie would be maintained later in the half with the score being 29˗29 then 33˗33.

Almesha Jones then made a three that placed the Eagles ahead prior to a pair of made free throws by Haley Gerrin, after being fouled by Steele on the ensuing Panthers possession. Jones was then the key player in a 7˗0 Eagles run as she put in three points and an assist as the Morehead State advantage became 43˗35.

Six of the next seven Georgia State points would come via two three pointers from Makeba Ponder as Georgia State trimmed their deficit to 43˗42. Aaliyah Wells then led a 9˗0 Morehead State run with four points and two assists to make the score 52˗42. Ponder’s third three of the game brought the Panthers within seven at 52˗45 before layups by Steele and Jones extended the Eagles’ advantage to 56˗45.

Leads of 58˗47 and 60˗49 would maintain the Morehead State 11 point lead. Another three from Ponder made the score 60˗52 before a foul by Nolan placed Wells at the free throw line. Wells only made one out of two shots.

With the score at 61˗52, Georgia State went on another 8˗3 run that included Ponder’s fifth three of the game along with a three˗pointer by Gaby Moss and a two˗point jumper by Brittany Logan. Almesha Jones’ free throw and a jumper by Casey Ryans, provided the scores for Morehead State as the scoreboard read 64˗60 in favor of the Eagles.

With the score at 66˗62, Ponder fouled Jones to put her at the line. She then made both of her free throw shots. This was followed up with Ponder’s sixth three to make the score 68˗65.

With the score reading 70˗67 in favor of Morehead State, a foul charged to Nolan placed Jones back at the line as she made both foul shots to give the Eagles a five point lead at 72˗67. Ponder’s seventh three closed the Georgia State deficit to 72˗70.

Ponder fouled Jones with four seconds left for her fifth and final foul of the game. Jones then made both free throws to make the score 74˗70. Watson then made a layup to make bring to the Panthers within two at 74˗72, but this would happen as time expired as Georgia State fell on the road to Morehead State.

Final Stats
Georgia State Morehead State
Ponder: 21 points, 7˗11 three pointers Jones: 26 points, ten assists
Watson: ten points, ten assists Steele: 17 points, 7˗13 shooting

The Panthers will take to the court again on Saturday as they return to the Sports Arena face Tennessee Tech.