With one second left, women’s basketball takes down Power 5 Oklahoma State

Isabella Schreck, Sports Editor

A shot in the paint from senior guard Katie Shumate brought Kent State within one point with 27 seconds left against the Big 12’s Oklahoma State.

Freshman guard Corynne Hauser followed up with a layup. KSU now had the lead.

After two good free throws by Shumate with 1 second left, the women’s basketball team defeated the Cowgirls 59-56 Saturday – for KSU’s first Power 5 team win of the season.

“We played extremely hard,” coach Todd Starkey said. “I was really proud of how tough we were all the way through. Our experience showed down the stretch.”

Kent State is now 2-2, with losses to the ACC’s Florida State and the SEC’s Arkansas.

Oklahoma State, which averaged 90 points per game going into Saturday, is 5-1.

In the last two years, the Flashes are 3-2 with Power 5 teams.

“These are the types of games we want to play,” Starkey said. “Our kids were really tough and gritty. We never gave in on things, really executed and did some really nice things down the stretch.”

Shumate led both programs with 23 points, going 7-17 from the field.

Graduate student forward Lindsey Thall scored a next-best 10 points – all came in the last 16 minutes of the night.

Tied up first half to take off in fourth period

Oklahoma State took a 8-2 lead halfway into the first quarter. The team stayed ahead until Hauser tied the score at 14-14.

KSU shot 5-of-16 from the field; OSU went 5-for-17.

By the end of the first half, the score was tied 29-29. Kent State had as much as a four point lead in the second quarter.

Both teams had its best field percentages of the night in the second quarter: Flashes going 6-for-14 and the Cowgirls shooting 5-of-13.

With 4:20 left in the third quarter, OSU took a 42-36 lead. The team stayed ahead at 44-40 by the end of the period.

The a 3-pointer from Oklahoma State gave the Cowgirls their largest lead of the game.

Thall sinked her fourth consecutive basket with 7:37 left in the night.

“A lot of times when we start playing through her in that way, we get good things,” Starkey said. “That was a deliberate thing. She did a really good job of executing offense and finishing.”

Kent State led 48-47, its first lead in over eight minutes. The team shot the next 11 of 20 points.

“What we did the best was controlling the tempo of the game,” Starkey said. “We did a really good job of making them have to defend multiple sets and making tough plays down the stretch.”

KSU out-rebounded the Cowgirls 43 to 41 and earned more points off turnovers and points from the bench.

“We did a good job at being connected,” Starkey said. “We were really active, we had a lot of deflections, had some blocked shots and really did a good job at keeping them off the glass.”

OSU’s fifth-year guard Claire Chastain totaled a team-best 19 points. She leads the team in scoring this season with 68 points.

Shumate tied with Chastain for eight rebounds.

“When she’s aggressive like that, she’s a tough matchup for anybody,” Starkey said.

Next up: the Christmas City Classic

The Flashes compete against Quinnipiac at 2:30 p.m. Saturday. They will play either Lehigh (2-2) or Southern Illinois, depending on tournament results, Sunday in the Christmas City Classic in Bethlehem, Penn.

Quinnipiac is 2-2 on the season. Senior forward Cur’Tiera Haywood leads the team with 47 points and four 3-pointers.

Senior forward-guard Frannie Hottinger has scored a team-best 89 points for Lehigh.

Southern Illinois is 0-3 and has scored only 183 points this season. Two players lead the program with 31 points each.

Starkey said the women’s Sunday will be a lasting moment for his team.

“These are memories that they’ll remember for their lifetime,” Starkey said. “It’s exciting to be able to provide that for them.”

Isabella Schreck is sports editor. Contact her at [email protected].