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Thursday, December 28, 2006 | Women's Basketball
WBB: Southern Illinois Slips Past Wichita State in MVC Opener
Four Salukis scored in double figures as Southern Illinois opened the 2006-07 Missouri Valley Conference season with a 10-point win over Wichita State, 74-64. Carlai Moore scored a game-high 16 points, and was joined in double figures by Debbie Burris’ 14 points, Jayme Sweere’s 13 points and Jasmine Gibson’s 11.
WSU's Frannie Vathauer’s had a career-high 14 points, which tied Kiki Stephens for the team lead, while Antionette Wells poured in 13.
The Salukis came out firing, scoring the first six points of the game on 3-of-4 shooting. Stephens responded to end the drought with just under 18 minutes left to cut the Saluki lead to 6-2.
SIU's defensive pressure forced three early Shocker turnovers, as the Salukis extended the lead to 10-3 by the first media timeout. The Shockers came out of the timeout on a 5-0 run of their own thanks to another Stephens basket and a Frannie Vathauer three-pointer and Vathauer's second three-pointer of the night gave the Shockers their first lead, 11-10, with just over 14 minutes remaining in the first half.
The teams then traded baskets, and the lead, over the next several minutes before a pair of Sweere free throws extended the Salukis lead to 22-17 with 7:08 left in the first.
A Taylor Steven three-pointer with 4:35 left brought the Shockers back within two, 26-24, which was as close as WSU would get down the stretch as SIU led WSU, 34-30 at the break.
SIU limited the Shockers to an 11-for-30 effort from the field in the first half, while Wichita State limited the Salukis to no three-pointers in the first frame.
The Salukis outscored the Shockers 9-6 in the early part of the second half to pull out to a 43-36 lead with 17:16 left in the game. SIU tied its largest lead of the game, eight points, after a Burris three-pointer gave SIU a 46-38 lead with just over 16 minutes left in regulation.
After SIU extended its lead to as many as 10 on two separate occasions Vathauer connected on her third three-pointer of the night to pull the Shockers to within 50-43 with 12:55 left in the half. Vathauer's ninth point of the night marked a career high for the Barnes, Kan., native.
Back-to-back three-pointers by Vathauer and McDonnell closed the SIU lead to just one, but Erica Smith answered with a three of her own to push the Salukis back out to a 53-49 lead with just under 10 minutes left in the game. Erin Pauk's first points of the game came on a three-pointer that marched the Salukis out to a 61-52 lead with 7:20 left in the second.
The Shockers gradually cut into the lead, and following a SIU timeout and a Stephens basket, the Shockers trailed, 61-58, with 4:00 left in regulation. The teams traded baskets yet again over the next two minutes before two Smith free throws gave the Salukis a 65-60 lead with two minutes left.
Pauk sunk two free throws to extend SIU's lead to seven, but Antionette Wells brought the Shockers back to within four with a lay up and free throw. The Salukis finished the last minute of play going 5-6 from the line to seal the 74-64 win.
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