Panthers suffer loss at Rose-Hulman to even season series

Alexis Nall

Written by Sports Information Student Assistant, Jake Sipes-Salter

HANOVER, Ind. -- Hanover women's basketball junior Alexis Nall (Mount Vernon, Ind.) scored 25-plus points for the third consecutive meeting against Rose-Hulman Wednesday evening, but the Panthers fell on the road, 65-49.

The Panthers fall to 13-7 overall with the loss, while slipping to 9-4 in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference. Meanwhile, the Fightin' Engineers improve to 14-6 and 11-2 in the HCAC.

The first quarter was a lot of back and forth action, with Hanover taking an immediate lead with 9:15 on the clock. Rose-Hulman would then take the helm, twice going up by five points and eventually pushing the margin to 13-7 with 2:51 left in the period. However, HC did not let the Fightin' Engineers take control completely, as they would close the quarter trailing by a tally of 16-12.

In the second frame, Rose-Hulman started with five unanswered points to make it a 21-12 deficit for the Blue and Red with 7:54 remaining in the period. From then, Hanover would outscore the Fightin' Engineers 16-5, with Nall notching 11 of those points, including a buzzer-beating jumper from the baseline. By halftime, the Panthers had claimed a 28-26 advantage.

In the third, however, the Blue and Red struggled, as the Rose-Hulman defense held them without a score for over seven minutes until freshman McKenzie Messmore (Bedford, Ind.) converted an and-one opportunity with 2:23 left in the quarter. Overall, HC was limited to three points in the frame and by the end of it they were behind by a score of 44-31.

While the fourth period was the highest scoring for each team, Hanover was unable to dig themselves out of the hole, only able to close the gap to 11 points.

Leading the pack for both squads in scoring was Nall, who posted 27 points on 10-of-12 shooting, including a perfect seven-for-seven from the free throw line. Nall also added a game-high five steals. In the regular season series between the two opponents, Nall has averaged 28 points and eight boards per game.

Juniors Katie Hartman (Madison, Ind.) and Kristin Mills (Cincinnati, Ohio) added six points each. Classmate Maleha Motter (Danville, Ind.) paced the Panthers with seven boards. 

As a unit, Hanover shot 17-of-18 from the charity stripe with the Fightin' Engineers shooting seven-for-eight. Moreover, the Panthers swiped 13 steals while Rose-Hulman nabbed seven. However, the Blue and Red shot at a clip of .306, with the Fightin' Engineers putting up a .441 mark from the floor.

Hanover will be on the road again this weekend with a trek to face conference-rival Anderson, with tip-off scheduled for 2 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 2.

Contact: Tyler Jester