Lady Owls snooze through home loss

Wednesday, January 23, 2002

Maybe it was inevitable that the Marshall girls' basketball team suffer a let-down, but that doesn't mean Jeff Martin has to like it.

"This was a big step backward," remarked the Lady Owls' head coach following Tuesday's 45-36 non-conference loss to visiting Smith-Cotton. "I'm really disappointed with our effort. We put on as poor an effort as we could have, and that's discouraging."

Martin realizes, of course, that Marshall had been "playing really well since Christmas" -- winning four of its last six games -- and had come off an emotional victory over Boonville for third place Saturday at the Smith-Cotton Classic and "may have been looking ahead" to Thursday's NCMC opener against Helias.

Whatever the explanations, though, the Lady Owls saw a one-point halftime lead dissipate during the third period. The Lady Tigers made just one field goal, but scored eight points from the free-throw line during a 10-3 run. Smith-Cotton was the aggressor, getting 36 charity shots -- making 25 of them -- to the Birds' eight during the game.

"It was obvious which team gave the best effort," Martin noted about the disparity. "They out-worked us and got the benefit of the officiating, which I guess is the way it should be."

Junior Jenna Hagedorn scored 15 points and collected six rebounds and senior Natalie Smith added 12 points for the Lady Tigers (7-11), which ended a five-game slide.

Senior Ashley Fann's 27 points provided the bulk of the offense for Marshall, which shot 35.7 percent from the field. The rest of the Lady Owls (8-8) managed only nine points, half coming from freshman Nicki Erickson off the bench.

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