BOWIE, MD – The Winston-Salem State Rams (4-6, 1-1 CIAA) played well for most of the game, but a critical third quarter drought cost the team in a 76-63 loss at Bowie State (8-1, 1-0 CIAA). After a strong first half of play, the Rams struggled in the second half to take their first Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) loss of the season.
The Rams' offensive struggles proved costly in the game as the team struggled to put points on the scoreboard in the loss. The Rams shot just 32.2% (19-of-59) from the floor in the loss, including shooting just 16.7% (one-of-six) from the three-point line. Three Rams reached double-digit scoring in the game with the backcourt duo of freshman Amaya Tucker and sophomore Teara Johnson both scored 15 points each in the game while senior forward Brionna Pate added a double-double 12 points with 10 rebounds.
Usually, the Rams get out to a slow start, but the team had a different experience against the Bulldogs. WSSU took control of the game early with a 12-4 start to the game after a free throw from Johnson with 4:41 left in the first quarter. However, the team allowed the Bulldogs to cut their lead down to just two points before back-to-back lay-ups from freshman forward Dajha Williams and Pate in the final minute of the first quarter. The effort left the Rams with a 20-17 lead at the end of the first quarter. The Rams allowed the Bulldogs to tie the game early in the second quarter, but they held their lead until the final seconds of the quarter when a BSU jumper left the Rams trailing in the final minute. The Rams would not go away as a Williams free throw with 26 seconds left in the quarter left the Rams with a 35-34 lead at the half.
It was in the third quarter when the Rams truly struggled as they allowed a big run by the Bulldogs that the tem would never recover from. The Rams allowed 18 unanswered points to the Bulldogs and were held scoreless until freshman forward Kinnidy Lawrence hit a lay-up with 3:02 left in the third quarter and left the Rams trailing, 52-37. The team would add six more points in the quarter, but took a 60-43 deficit into the fourth quarter. The Rams would make a comeback effort in the fourth quarter, but it was not quite enough. After falling behind by as many as 20 points, 63-43, the Rams clawed their way back into the game as they cut their deficit down to just 13 points at the end of the game, 76-63.
With the loss, the Rams fall to 4-6 overall and 1-1 in CIAA play. The team will return to action on New Year's Eve when the team heads to Institute, West Virginia to take on the West Virginia State Yellowjackets. For more information on Rams women's basketball, contact the WSSU Office of Athletic Media Relations at (336) 750-2143 or log on to www.WSSURams.com.