The Cottey College Comets basketball team lost to the University of St. Mary Lady Spires on Monday night by a final score of 39-54. The Comets dropped their first match up against St. Mary in November by a deficit of 22 points.
The first half was a low-scoring affair and the Comets entered halftime tied 17-17 in a half where both teams struggled on the offensive end. In the third quarter, the Comets continued to battle with the Lady Spires and found themselves trailing by only four points heading into the fourth frame of play.
The Comets struggled to defend the 6’3” inside presence of Dakota Corle down the stretch and were forced to foul to stop the clock in an effort to attempt some quick points on the offensive end. Unfortunately for the Comets, they were unable to convert when they had the ball. The Spires, hitting their free throws, were able to increase their lead to 15 as time ran off the clock.
“We had one of our best defensive nights against St. Mary on Monday,” said head coach Stephanie Beason. That solid defense is a plus considering four of the Comets next six opponents are either ranked in the top 25 for NAIA DII or are receiving votes for the top 25.
Beason continued, “This season has been a trying season for our team. We did not shy away from scheduling some top-level opponents in the Midwest. This season has been all about progress for our team. We knew it was going to be a tough season being new to the NAIA and with the schedule we have. However, our athletes have continued to progress throughout the year. The effort continues to be there each night; we have been closing the gap and making adjustments as the season continues.”
The Comets were led on the offensive end by junior guard Kelsey Acton with 9 points. Kasey Acton continued to fill the stat sheet leading the team in rebounds with 9 and chipping in 3 assists, 2 steals, and 4 points on the night.
Up next the Comets will travel to Lawrence, Kansas, to take on A.I.I. conference opponent Haskell Indian Nations University on Wednesday, January 30.