FOND DU LAC, Wis. (SabreAthletics.com) – The Marian University women's basketball team experienced another first half lead go by the wayside as visiting UW-Stout made up a 16-point deficit to defeat the Sabres, 71-64, inside Sadoff Gymnasium this afternoon, Dec. 15.
Ashley Backes led the Sabres with 17 points on 7-of-13 shooting and fueled a fueled a first half run that saw Marian jump out to 16 points before going into halftime with a seven-point edge. The first half lead was built up by 10 made three-pointers, including three from Backes. In all, six different Sabres knocked down triples in the first half.
Marian finished with 14 three's for the game, but allowed the Blue Devils to shoot 51.7 percent (15-for-29) in the second half and outscore them by 14.
UW-Stout improved to 6-5 overall with the win, while Marian dropped to 3-5 with the loss.
At the 9:14 mark of the first half, an Ally Hopp three-pointer put the Sabres up 28-12 to cap a 14-3 run and equal their biggest lead of the game of 16 points.
The Blue Devils cut the deficit as halftime neared, making an 8-2 run to cut the Marian lead to six points after a Sami Schoeder bucket. The Sabres would stretch the halftime advantage to seven points, 38-31.
UW-Stout's Whitney Rawdon scored 11 of her game-high 18 points in the second half. She also added 10 rebounds for a double-double as the Blue Devils out-rebounded Marian, 45-24, and outscored them 18-0 in second chance points en route to the comeback win.
Two Rissa Cerveny free throws put the Sabres back up by 10 points with 11:18 remaining in the game. That would be the last time Marian would score for a while as UW-Stout made a game-changing 18-0 run over the next 10 minutes.
The Sabres didn't score again until the 1:12 mark when Cerveny knocked down a three to cut the now Marian deficit to 65-60. The Sabres then used a timeout, but at that point it was seemingly too late.
After shooting 50 percent in the first half, the Sabres managed just a 31 percent clip from the floor in the second half. Cerveny finished with 17 points on five three-pointers. Sarah Albert added 10 points as well. Dani Huray chipped in six points, seven assists and two steals.
The Sabres will turn around and host another state school in UW-Oshkosh in a 7 p.m. start this Monday, Dec. 17.