Billikens Fall Despite Eggertís Double-Double
ST. LOUIS - Mallory Eggert tied her career scoring high with 16 points and collected a season-high 10 rebounds, but Indiana State rallied for a 48-46 victory over Saint Louis Thursday night at Chaifetz Arena.
Eggert registered a career-high eight field goals (8-of-10), made a career-high and team season-high six steals, and tied her career best with two blocks before fouling out with 3:15 to play. The double-double was the first of the season for the Billikens (2-4).
"I thought Mallory did a nice job and had a nice game," head coach Lisa Stone said. "We wanted to focus on getting the ball inside to her because we had some mismatches against their smaller lineup. It hurt us down the stretch when she fouled out."
Desirae Ball scored a season-high 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting, while Lorreal Jones grabbed a game-high and SLU season-high 12 rebounds, including six on the offensive glass. Jacy Bradley tied her career high and the SLU season high with seven assists, tying for game-high honors.
Racheal Mahan netted a game-high 23 points (9-of-14 FG) and a team-high six rebounds for Indiana State (4-2). Anna Munn scored 14 points, and Taylor Whitley recorded seven assists.
Saint Louis earned a 34-20 rebounding advantage, marking the fifth time in six games this season the Billikens have won the battle of the boards. But SLU was hurt by 23 turnovers, which Indiana State turned into 21 points.
For a fourth time in program history, the Bills have held their opponent to fewer than 50 points for three consecutive games. The feat was accomplished last in the 1985-86 season.
"I'm disappointed and sad for our kids," Stone said. "I thought we had a great defensive game plan. We wanted to hold Indiana State under 50 points, which we did.
"I give our team a lot of credit for being down nine points and coming back to take a nine-point lead. They didn't quit, they kept playing.
"But what happened was we beat ourselves tonight with turnovers," Stone said. "We had 14 in the first half, and we did a decent job of taking care of the ball in the second half until late in the game. The bottom line is we just have to do a better job of taking care of the ball."
Saint Louis trailed 28-21 at halftime but outscored Indiana State 21-5 to take a 42-33 lead with just under nine minutes to play.
After the Sycamores scored the first bucket of the second half, the Billikens responded with a 9-0 run to pull even. Bradley made a layup, followed by Jones' 3-pointer, Eggert's short jumper and Ball's steal and layup.
A basket by Whitley put Indiana State back in front, but Ball answered on the Bills' next possession. Jones made one of two free throws with 13:47 left to give SLU its first lead, 33-32, since the 11-minute mark of the first half.
Ball canned a 3-pointer, and Eggert turned an offensive rebound into a layup for a 38-32 Billiken advantage. An ISU free throw made it a five-point game, but SLU used two free throws by Bradley and an Eggert layup for a 42-33 cushion with 8:43 remaining.
However, Saint Louis would score just four more points the rest of the way.
ISU narrowed the gap to 44-43 on Mahan's three-point play with 4:03 left and had a chance to take the lead on its next possession, but Whitley was denied on a fast-break layup attempt. Ball gathered the rebound, was fouled and made two from the stipe for a 46-43 Billiken edge at the 3:27 mark.
Mahan's free throw with 3:06 remaining cut the lead to two. She scored the tying field goal with 1:58 to go, and Munn completed the comeback with what proved to be the game-winning bucket with 58 seconds to play.
All five starters scored for SLU as the Billikens took a 15-11 lead in the first eight minutes of the game. But the Sycamores tallied the next 11 points and went on to claim a 28-21 advantage at intermission.The Billikens are back in action Saturday, Dec. 1, at Valparaiso. Game time is 1:35 p.m.