Plethora of turnovers costly in close games
January 18, 2010 —
The Cardinals had expectations of getting back into the GLIAC hunt with what they believed were three winnable\ games.
After losing all three games by ten points or less, SVSU is left searching for answers.
Tiffin came to town having won only one of its six road games all season. The first half featured five lead changes while the Cardinals maintained a 30-29 advantage going into the locker room.
The second half was much of the same as the lead went back and forth six different times. The Dragons led by as many as 12 points although the Cards battled back and took the lead at 59-58 with 4:57 left. It would turn out to be the last time they would see the lead, as Tiffin ended the game on a 12-4 run to give it a 70-63 win. It was a disappointing loss for Cardinals head coach Shannon Baugh.
“We had the lead at the half, we just couldn’t close it out,” Baugh said. “It’s tough to lose so many close games.”
Baugh believes the determining factor was the fact the Cardinals managed to make only three of 17 attempts from threepoint range.
“It was very uncharacteristic of us to attempt that many threes,” Baugh said. “We had a lot of open looks, which is why we attempted so many. We just couldn’t get them to fall. In a close game like that, if we hit a couple of them it could have turned out in our favor.”
Baugh had been impressed with how improved the Cards have been rebounding so far this season. Against Tiffin however, the Dragons held a 51-35 advantage.
“That was a surprising statistic for us,” Baugh said. “We had been doing a much better job rebounding this season, although for whatever reason, we weren’t very successful against Tiffin.”
Heading into its game against SVSU, Wayne State had not won a GLIAC game this season.
Twenty-eight Cardinal turnovers helped the Warriors pick up that elusive GLIAC win, defeating the Cardinals 68-58. Wayne State scored 23 points off the turnovers while SVSU managed only 11 points off 14 Wayne State turnovers. The turnover differential cost the Cardinals the game, according to Baugh.
“When we go through and watch film, we show the players what they did wrong on a certain play. When we ask them what they should have done differently, they always have the correct answer. It comes down to execution and right now, we aren’t executing everything the way we need to be,” Baugh said.
Junior forward Brittany Burkhardt was one of three Cardinals to score in double figures, leading the way with 17 points. After that, the scoring was few and far between.
“We have to do a better job of getting scoring from the bench,” Baugh said. “We need to develop offensive consistency so the pressure isn’t on two or three players to score.”
Not even a balanced offensive attack against Northwood was enough for the Cardinals to overcome two Northwood players scoring 29 and 21 points. SVSU had four players score in double figures, while Northwood only had three. Northwood won 77-68. Baugh attributed Northwood senior forward Jodi Ostergren’s 29-point performance to her success at the free-throw line.
“Jodi hit 11 of her 13 attempts from the line,” Baugh said. “If we could have limited the number of fouls on her we could have had a better chance at the end.”
Junior guard Kelley Wesp scored 12 points to go along with eight assists. Baugh was satisfied with her performance.
“Maybe the most important stat was that she had zero turnovers, Baugh said. “She has had a great assist-to-turnover ratio all season. It was out of character for her to turn it over as many times as she did against Wayne State. She did a good job of putting that behind her and having a good game against Northwood.”
With two of the GLIAC’s top teams coming to town in Michigan Tech (6 p.m. Thursday) and Northern Michigan (1 p.m. Saturday), Baugh knows it won’t be easy to break the losing streak.
“We just have to play complete games. If we limit the turnovers and execute on the offensive end, we can compete with anyone.”