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September 29, 2023

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BGSU women’s basketball wins fourth straight game

The BG women’s basketball team overcame shooting just 28.6 percent from the field in the first half to defeat Ball State University Wednesday night.

With the win, the Falcons advance to an overall record of 14-2 and are 4-0 in the Mid-American Conference.

The Cardinals’ first half field goal percentage nearly doubled the Falcons’, going 42.9 percent. Sophomore Miriam Justinger scored BG’s first seven points of the night, four of those coming from the free-throw line, a place that would prove to keep the Falcons in the game.

Despite the Falcons’ low field goal percentage in the first half, BG did go 12-of-16 from the line. BG went into halftime trailing 28-31.

Bowling Green was able to overcoming their shooting woes and early foul trouble in the second half. BG’s field goal percentage jumped to 52.2 percent in the final half. The Falcons also went 5-of-8 from three-point range, along with 15-of-17 made from the free-throw line for the half.

BG continued to battle foul trouble throughout the remainder of the game. Late in the second half, Erica Donovan, Alexis Rogers and Jill Stein all had four fouls, while Jillian Halfhill had three.

Ball State took advantage of that and sparked a comeback late in the half, bringing what was a 15 point lead at the eight minute mark within four points. However, the Falcons were able to put away the win with their much-improved shooting percentage in the second half.

Justinger finished with a career-high 18 points for the Falcons, including an 11-of-12 effort from the free-throw line. Rogers added a total of 15 points and Halfhill finished with 13 points on the night.

BG Head Coach Jennifer Roos said Ball State used new defensive alignments on the Falcons that they had not used in the previous 14 games.

She said the biggest differences in the game were her team’s success at the free-throw line, along with their ability to maintain Ball State’s three-point shooters to just 1-of-14 from behind the arc.

“They threw everything at us, and a kitchen sink, and we were able to weather the storm,” Roos said. “This was good for us to be in a tight situation because, even though it was a double-digit win for us, it felt like every possession was a grind.”

Next, the Falcons will continue on the road to face the defending MAC Tournament champions Central Michigan on Saturday, Jan. 18. The Chippewas are 8-8 overall, but are off to a 4-0 start in the MAC. In conference play, CMU has defeated both Toledo and Northern Illinois at home, while also claiming road wins over Akron and Buffalo.

Roos said her Falcons are tired, facing three games in eight days on Saturday. Because of that, she said her team will have light practices and walk-throughs to prepare for Central Michigan so they can enter the game fresh.

Tipoff for Saturday’s match at Central Michigan is scheduled for 12 p.m.

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