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Eagles fall to Furman
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Georgia Southern's MiMi DuBose, center, shows her frustration after being called for a foul in the second half against Furman at Hanner Fieldhouse Monday.

Furman was 17-for-22 shooting from the foul line compared to Georgia Southern’s 5-for-11 shooting en route to a 66-60 victory over the Lady Eagles in a Southern Conference women’s basketball game Monday night.

A Hanner Fieldhouse crowd of 478 watched as GSU (2-6 overall, 0-2 SoCon) pulled within two points, 60-58, with 57 seconds to play thanks to junior guard Meredyth Frye’s foul shot. But Furman (5-2, 2-0) made six free-throws down the stretch to win.

"They’re a good ball team," GSU head coach Rusty Cram said of the Paladins. "They got to the rim and we didn’t. And that’s the difference in the ball game."

GSU was 25-for-59 shooting (42.4 percent) from the field compared to Furman’s 22-for-58 shooting (37.9 percent), but the Paladins got to the foul line more frequently and capitalized.

"We got better tonight," said Cram, whose Lady Eagles were coming off a 64-45 conference-opening loss at Appalachian State on Thursday. "Our marquee player is Meredyth Frye, and she goes 1-for-9 tonight, and when we got her the basketball she just didn’t have a good night."

Frye was 1-for-9 from the field, 0-for-2 from 3-point range and 1-for-4 from the foul line. She finished with three points, seven below her season average.

"They did a good job on her, but the free-throw line was the difference," Cram said. "We knew that going in. They were 17-for-22 and we were like 5-for-9. That’s what they did to us last year. We actually have more buckets than they do. But when you put them on the free-throw line that’s what happens, and that’s where we broke down."

Frye, who was selected to the Preseason All-SoCon Team, wore a protective facemask during the game.

"Her nose is broken so she has to play with that mask," Cram said. "It’s been two or three times she got hit there since the season started. It may have been broken before (the previous game), we don’t know, but the last time really got her good. So she has to play in the mask if she’s going to play."

GSU sophomore guard MiMi DuBose scored a season-high 18 points, including a season-high four 3-pointers. Senior guard Janay Wilson added 11 points.

"It’s frustrating because one of our goals was to win all of our games at home in conference play this year," DuBose said. "It’s frustrating to know that we lost the game. They did not beat us tonight. Our transition defense and our early turnovers definitely lost the game. So it’s on us. They were the better team tonight, but we helped them be the better team."

Cram said he and his assistants challenged DuBose and her teammates to produce more. "Better night," Cram said of DuBose. "We challenged her all week just for her game to start stepping up. It was a good time for her to step up. We’ve just got to get two or three of them on the same night doing that, and that’s what we’re lacking right now. As soon as we get two or three doing that, we’re going to be a pretty good ball team. We’ve just got to stay patient and let it run its course, and continue to get better."

Furman was led by junior guard Teshia Griswold’s game-high 19 points. Junior guard Kaitlin Murphy, who was selected to the Preseason All-SoCon Team, finished with 18 points.

Furman, which was picked to finish sixth in the SoCon Coaches’ Preseason Poll, one spot ahead of GSU, held a 34-30 halftime lead. The Paladins were coming off a 60-51 conference-opening victory at College of Charleston on Saturday. Furman defeated Troy, 75-57, on Nov. 17 and lost to Clemson, 68-67, on Nov. 28.

GSU will play Stetson in a non-conference game at 7 p.m. Thursday at Hanner Fieldhouse.


Noell Barnidge can be reached at (912) 489-9408.