It was a game that was decided by the final seconds.
With just 28 seconds left senior guard Nakeya Penny converted on a layup that gave the Cardinals the 62-61 advantage. However, the Rockets connected on a put-back layup after a blocked shot by Ball State sophomore forward Oshlynn Brown giving Toledo the lead back.
As the final four seconds clicked down, Brown received the ball in the post and dished it out to a wide-open Penny and she buried it but the buzzer had already sounded and Ball State Women's Basketball (7-19, 2-12 MAC) dropped their eighth straight game to Toledo (16-9, 8-6 MAC), 63-62.
“I wish college basketball was played in 40 minutes and one-tenth of a second,” Sallee said. “We got the ball right where we wanted to and they went and doubled [Brown] and she did what she had to do and made the extra pass and one-tenth of a second was the difference.”
Besides the outcome, Sallee was still impressed with the way Ball State finished the game with their late game execution.
“I thought from top to bottom there were a lot of good things out there,” Sallee said. “[Late game] is a place where we have struggled… the toughness we played with all night was good stuff.”
The Cardinals’ offense was active in the paint to start the contest. They controlled the inside scoring 22 points down-low in the first half giving them the 30-28 lead at the break. The Cardinals continued to pound the ball in the post successfully finishing with 34 points in the post.
“We are a team that has to play from the inside out and we want to go through [Brown] and [Agustsdottir],” Sallee said. “I think any time you can establish your presents in the paint it’s going to be good.”
Brown made a statement early and got things going for the Cardinals as she scored 12 points and snatched 8 rebounds in just the first half. Freshman forward Thelma Dis Agustsdottir also helped in the scoring category adding 10 points.
They finished the game leading the Cardinals as Brown had 20 points and 11 rebounds and Agustsdottir put up 17 points.
The Cardinals as a team finished the contest shooting 44.2 percent from the field and didn’t rely on the three-ball much only shooting nine total and they made four.
Ball State focused in on Toledo’s top scorer and rebounder Kaayla McIntyre, who averages 16.1 points and 8.2 rebound per game, holding her to just two points in the first half. However, McIntyre was able to find her rhythm in the second half and ended with 16 points helping give the Rockets the final edge.
“We knew they were going to try and throw her the ball and I thought we did a good job doubling and keeping it out,” Sallee said. “I thought [Brown’s] tempo defensively was as good as its been in almost a month... it was through the roof good.”
Ball State will finish their three-game homestead Wednesday at 7 p.m. against the number one team in the MAC West division, Central Michigan.
Contact Daric Clemens with any comments at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @DaricClemens