STEVENS POINT, Wis. - The UW-Stevens Point women's basketball team weathered a slow start but could not find enough offense late on in a 57-53 loss to No. 16 UW-Oshkosh in the team's Play4Kay game on Wednesday night at Berg Gym.
Both UW-Stevens Point (16-8, 9-6 WIAC) and UW-Oshkosh (21-3, 12-3 WIAC) shot 38.8 percent from the field but the Titans outscored the Pointers 15-3 from behind the arc in the game and Miranda Tyler scored 14 points for UWSP, while Sarah Stecker led UWO with 11 points and nine rebounds.
After trailing by nine with 7:09 remaining, UW-Stevens Point trimmed the deficit to four with 3:46 remaining after Allie Miceli tracked down her own missed free-throw and scored on a layup. The Titans led by at least three the rest of the way.
UWSP was within three, 56-53, with 28 seconds remaining after Olp made a pair of free throws. After a Pointers foul, Taylor Schmidt hit one of two free throws to give UWO a four-point lead. On what turned out to be the final possession of the game, UW-Stevens Point attempted two three-pointers but could not convert.
Earlier in the second half, the Pointers cut the Titans lead to two with over 10 minutes to play following a three-point play by Tyler. However, UW-Oshkosh scored the next seven points of the game to take the nine-point lead with seven-plus minutes to go.
UW-Oshkosh held UW-Stevens Point scoreless for the first six and a half minutes of the game until Olp found Autumn Hennes for a layup. The Pointers defense kept the team close in the opening stages before a 7-2 Titans run gave the visitors a 23-15 lead.
UW-Stevens Point responded with a 7-0 run of its own to get within one at 23-22 late in the opening half. Tyler started the run with a pair of baskets but UW-Oshkosh took a five-point lead into the locker room at halftime. UWSP outscored UWO 14-6 in the paint in the opening half but the Titans held a 16-6 advantage in bench points.
Both teams shot under 60 percent from the free-throw line, combining to miss 22 free throws in the game. UW-Stevens Point held a 41-35 rebounding advantage and outscored UW-Oshkosh 32-20 in the paint in the game.
After committing nine turnovers in the second half, the Titans committed just four in the second. Five players scored between seven and nine points for UW-Oshkosh, while Olp and Tyler were the only UW-Stevens Point players to score more than six.
The game was part of the nationwide Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Play4Kay campaign and the Pointers raised over $5,100 through various fundraisers this season. All the money raised supported Project Embrace.
UW-Stevens Point is now locked in as the third seed for the WIAC playoffs. The Pointers close out their regular season schedule at UW-Stout at 3 p.m. on Saturday afternoon.
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