Spartans Need Comeback to Down Women’s Hoops

BOCA RATON, Fla. - Lynn University's women's basketball team had the 10th-ranked Tampa Spartans on the ropes but couldn't deliver the knock-out punch, falling 57-52 on Saturday afternoon.  Kira Harvey led all scorers with 21 points.  The Fighting Knights drop to 9-4 overall and 2-2 in the Sunshine State Conference.

Neither team was able to grab ahold of the lead and run with it as the contest featured 10 lead changes and 13 score ties.  The back-and-forth affair began just after tip-off with Tampa leading 5-2.  Three points later from Harvey and the score was knotted a 5-5.

Lynn looked as though it would pull away from the Spartans (11-1, 2-1 SSC) late in the first half when  Charla Nelson-James entered the game.  The sophomore forward scored on consecutive baskets down low forcing Tampa to call a timeout.  KeAla Jones and Juliana Cavallaro cut the deficit to one but Nelson-James tipped-in a shot as time expired to give LU a 30-27 lead heading into the break.

Tampa quickly erased a four-point disadvantage with a 6-0 run to startthe second half but the eighth tie of the game came when Harvey maneuvered through traffic for a lay-up to tie the game at 33.

The two teams exchanged baskets for much of the period until a shot clock violation allowed the Spartans to grab possession and the lead.  Sadie Oyer put her team on top for good with 5:59 to play with a layup.  Oyer scored 18 points on 8-of-9 shooting.  

Harvey did her best to keep Lynn in the game, knocking down a pair of threes but Shamika Williams answered with a bank three as the shot clock expired and then hit 4-of-6 attempts at the charity stripe to claim the win.

Lynn shot 36.8 percent from the field and held Tampa to 36.5 percent shooting.  Although making some shots at the free-throw line late, UT was just 57.1 percent during the game and committed 16 turnovers but outrebounded LU 46-31 overall.

The Fighting Knights hit the road for the first of three consecutive road games when they travel to Melbourne, Fla., to battle Florida Tech on Wednesday, January 16.  Tip-off is set for 5:30 p.m.  Fans can watch the action live at  Don't forget to 'Like' us on Facebook and follow @LUKnights on Twitter and Instagram.