Winthrop University

Lady Eagles fall to No. 25 Xavier

CINCINNATI -- A drought of 6:35 in the second half allowed No. 25 Xavier to turn a 12-point lead into a 66-43 victory Saturday afternoon at the Cintas Center as the Winthrop women's basketball team dropped its second straight game.

Winthrop (2-3) trailed 36-25 at the break and opened up the second half with four unanswered points to force Xavier into a quick timeout. Xavier responded by extending the lead to 14 points until Ashley Haugtvedt's layup made it 45-33. At that point Winthrop went scoreless for the next six and a half minutes while Xavier took full advantage for a 15-0 run, led by eight points from Ta'Shia Phillips.

Just like the first half, Xavier continued to pound the ball inside and Phillips converted on two traditional three-point plays and hit another lay-in.

Xavier (5-2) finished the game 21-for-26 from the free throw line that included an 8-for-11 performance by Phillips, who came into the game shooting 37 percent from the line. Phillips finished the game with 20 points and 13 rebounds.

The Musketeers entered the game hitting just 50 percent of its free throws on the season (53-for-106).

"We didn't do a good job today of matching the physical play of Xavier," Winthrop coach Bud Childers said. "Those statistics (rebounding and free throw line difference) alone tell the difference in the ball game. The 50/50 balls seem to go Xavier's way. I'm disappointed as I thought we were ready to play until they knocked us around early and we seem to struggle after that. We told our players that instead of giving them an easy basket, let's foul them and earn it at the line but they did a great job making their free throws today."

During the drought, Winthrop was 0-for-6 from the field, 0-for-2 from the foul line and committed three turnovers. Xavier went 6-for-10 from the floor and 2-for-2 at the line.

In the first half Winthrop jumped out to an early 5-0 lead after a Jessica Fansler jumper and a three from Yvonne van Daalen. Winthrop led 9-8 midway through the half until April Phillips lay-in gave Xavier a lead it held the remainder of the game.

The Musketeers are known for a strong inside game and after a few shots didn't fall from the outside they got the ball inside. It paid off as they went to the foul line 17 times in the first half, connecting on 15.

Fansler finished with a team-high 18 points on 8-of-17 shooting and she also had two steals, one assist and no turnovers. Fann finished with nine points and five rebounds.

In the game, the Lady Eagles shot just 33 percent from the floor, including 29 percent in the second half.

"Hopefully, we can salvage a victory tomorrow and make the bus ride home a little easier," Childers said.

Winthrop will be back in action at noon today as it wraps up the Xavier Tournament against Tennessee-Martin, which lost to Xavier, 73-41.