The Emory women’s basketball team fell 71-62 in overtime to the Oglethorpe University (Ga.) Stormy Petrels on Nov. 12 during their season-opening contest hosted at the WoodPEC.
Senior center Ashley Oldshue led the way for the Eagles with a game-high 15 points and 10 rebounds, notching her 12th double-double. Senior guard Azzairia Jackson-Sherrod added 14 points and eight rebounds. Sophomore center Blair Ripley and junior guard Allison Chernow rounded out the double-digit scorers with 12 and 11 points, respectively.
Trailing 22-20 at halftime, the Eagles began the second half with a slow start. The Stormy Petrels took a 37-30 lead off a pair of triples and a layup. But the Eagles fought back with an 8-1 run of their own powered by Jackson-Sherrod who accounted for four points individually.
Tied 38-38 at the start of the final frame, the back-and-forth battle between the Eagles and the Stormy Petrels continued. Each three, layup and free throw was matched by the opposing team throughout the fourth quarter.
With just under a minute remaining, Oglethorpe held a slim 56-55 advantage over Emory. A well-timed and-one layup by Oldshue following a timeout swapped the lead in the Eagles’ favor with 11 seconds left in regulation. However, Oglethorpe’s Taylor Dodson received two free throws off a debatable foul with three seconds remaining. Dodson cooly sank both shots.
Again, tied with a score of 58-58, turnovers, fouls and a long scoring drought ultimately ended the Eagles’ chance of winning. Emory struggled with five turnovers and failed to score for over a four-minute stretch in the overtime period, while Oglethorpe drilled three field goals and six free throws to secure their win 71-62.
Head Coach Misha Jackson saw positive aspects of the Eagles’ game, but hopes for more consistency in the future.
“Basketball is a game of runs, and we just didn’t put them together,” Jackson said. “Defensively, we had some good stops, but we traded too many baskets back and forth. We need to have consecutive stops. That’s how you will win ball games.”
Oldshue also applauded the team’s defensive efforts but said there is room for improvement.
“I thought we had a great defensive night,” Oldshue said. “Holding a team to 58 points in regular time is a pretty good night, and even with that, we still gave up way too many offensive rebounds. However, we can’t only score 58 points over four quarters.”
Despite the loss, Oldshue said the team has potential.
“I think we need to be more confident in what works for us and not stray away from that just because it’s game day,” Oldshue added. “We have to find a way to use all of our strengths together on offense if we want a conference championship and a trip to the tournament in the spring.”
Jackson echoed Oldshue’s thoughts and eyes development as the season progresses.
“Our goal is to get better every day and compete for everything,” Jackson said. “I think we know this can be a really good season for us. We just have to focus on playing our way.”
The Eagles look to bounce back on Nov. 17 against Virginia Wesleyan University at the Guilford College Tip-Off Classic in Greensboro, N.C.