LEBANON, Tenn. – Cumberland shot just 21 percent from the field in the first half and the Bulldogs were never able to recover, dropping a 58-40 decision to sixth-ranked Bethel University in women’s basketball action Thursday night in McKenzie, Tenn.
Cumberland (11-15, 3-10 TranSouth) went more than seven minutes without a point in the opening minutes of the game and Bethel (21-4, 10-2) netted 13 straight points, taking a commanding lead the Wildcats would never relinquish. In the second half the Bulldogs shot a much more respectable 41 percent from the floor, but the damage was already done.
CU’s leading scorer, freshman Casie Cowan, went 0-for-8 from the field, 0-for-3 from 3-point range, and was held scoreless in the contest. Jessica Pace led the Bulldogs with 12 points and seven rebounds, while Yalonda Davis added 11 points. For her efforts Pace was named the Music City Star of the Game.
Teena Carter led all players with 16 points and nine rebounds, and freshman Molly Wallsmith netted 14 points for the Wildcats, 11 in the second half.
Tamara Gonzalez scored the first five points for the Bulldogs for an early 5-2 lead in the contest, but CU missed its next seven shots, committed three offensive fouls, one technical foul as well as four turnovers before its next bucket more than seven minutes later from Samantha Harper.
The Wildcats scored 13 consecutive points during Cumberland’s dry spell and never looked back. BU went 5-for-12 from 3-point range and hit 46 percent from the field in the half, with Carter hitting a pair of 3-pointers and netting 14 points along with six rebounds.
Cumberland made only 6-of-28 field goals (.214), including 1-for-11 from 3-point range. Gonzalez missed her final three trifecta attempts of the period and Cowan was 0-for-6 from the field and 0-for-3 from behind the arc in the half. Bethel took a 35-13 advantage at the break.
Cumberland hosts Martin Methodist on Saturday at 2 p.m. on Senior Day. The Bulldogs will also be taking part in the WBCA Pink Zone initiative for the game and will honor its only two seniors, Ashley Whitmore and Tranisha Benton, at the completion of the women’s game.