LEBANON, Tenn. – Casie Cowan led three Cumberland players in double figures with 18 points, but a 9-0 spurt midway through the second half opened a double-digit lead for sixth-ranked Freed-Hardeman in a 72-58 victory in women’s basketball action Saturday in Henderson, Tenn.
Cumberland (7-7, 0-2 TranSouth) led 31-29 at halftime and trailed just 45-42 after a Cowan field goal with 13:21 remaining in the game. But Whitney Johnson scored seven of nine points during the 9-0 spurt over the next two minutes, and the Bulldogs were never to pull closer than nine points the rest of the game. Johnson netted 16 of her 18 points in the second half for the Lions.
Meredith Boehler, the nation’s leading scorer, led FHU (13-3, 2-0) with 24 points, while Natalie Shumpert added 15 points. The Lions were 10-of-14 at the foul line in the second half compared to just 1-of-3 for the Bulldogs. Freed-Hardeman also outrebounded CU, 23-12, after intermission.
Cowan ended the contest 7-for-15 from the field with a trio of 3-pointers, as the Bulldogs were 8-of-18 from behind the arc in the contest. Jessica Pace scored 10 points and grabbed a game-high nine rebounds, while Yalonda Davis posted 14 points for CU. For her efforts Cowan was named the Music City Star of the Game.
Freed-Hardeman took the early lead in the game behind Boehler, who scored 10 of FHU’s first 14 points. The Lions took a 20-13 advantage after another bucket from Boehler with 10:11 left in the period, but the Bulldogs responded with a 10-3 spurt to tie the contest.
Cowan hit a 3-pointer and Pace made a basket before another trifecta from Cowan. Pace’s two free throws with 5:11 remaining in the half tied the game at 23.
Cowan added another bucket and Pace had one free throw before Davis scored the final two baskets of the half, the last just two seconds before intermission, putting the Bulldogs ahead, 31-29.
Cowan led the Bulldogs with 12 points in the half, including a pair of 3-pointers, while Davis added nine points and Pace had eight points and six rebounds. Boehler was 6-for-11 from the field and netted 16 points in the period for FHU. Shumpert added nine points for the home team.
Cumberland plays at Blue Mountain College on Thursday at 6 p.m. before returning home next Saturday to face rival Trevecca Nazarene at 2 p.m.