Grace Remington, Staff Writer
Winter break not only includes the start of a new year, but also the start of conference play. The Miami University women's basketball team is 0-2 in the Mid-American Conference and 3-10 overall after a 71-41 blowout loss to Ball State University Wednesday. The contest concludes a six-game road stretch, in which Miami lost five of the six games.
"I mean, you lose some and you win some," junior forward Hannah McCue said. "But when you lose some like this, that's bad."
After trading baskets and the lead for the first six minutes of the game, Ball State went on a 10-0 run to take a 16-7 advantage at the 11:11 mark. A three-pointer from McCue and two jumpers from freshman guard Anna Richter made it 25-19 with 5:38 left. During the next five minutes, the Cardinals held the 'Hawks scoreless and finished the half leading 38-22.
BSU took a 50-26 lead in five minutes to start the second half. Miami came within 18 points at 50-32 with 13:40 to go, but a 22-9 run by the Cardinals put the game away.
Miami shot 41.7 percent from the field, while Ball State shot 47.5 percent. The difference for the RedHawks came via 31 turnovers, nearly twice as the 16 turnovers per game they averaged entering the contest.
"If we cut down on turnovers, we would've had a chance to win," McCue said. "You're not going to win a game with 31 turnovers. We need to work on holding onto the ball."
Richter led Miami with 14 points and seven rebounds, while McCue had seven points and six rebounds. Freshman forward Molly McDonagh tallied six points in her first collegiate start. Junior guard Nathalie Fontaine led Ball State with 27 points.
The RedHawks begin a three-game home stand when they play the University at Buffalo Saturday. Buffalo is 7-6 overall, 0-2 in MAC play and is coming off a two-game losing streak. The Bulls are led by junior guard MacKenzie Loesing and senior forward Kristen Sharkey, who average 12.9 and 12.7 points per game, respectively.
"It's a tough stretch for any team to have four neutral games and have two away conference games, so it will be nice to play at home," head coach Cleve Wright said in his weekly press conference. "Buffalo will be a tough opponent, but we'll be excited about being in Millett."
Tipoff is set for 3 p.m. Saturday in Millett Hall.