ROMEOVILLE, Ill. — Junior guard Aisjah Roan tallied a career-best 27 points, but the Lady Railsplitters were dropped by the Lewis University Flyers, 77-65, in non-conference women’s basketball action on Thursday. Lincoln Memorial University lost its fourth straight contest, falling to 4-5 in the process, while GLVC foe Lewis improves to 6-2 on the season with the win.
The Lady Railsplitters finished shooting 35.1 percent in the contest, going 27-for-77 overall and two-for-14 from the three-point line. Lincoln Memorial also struggled from the free throw line, finishing with a nine-for-15 clip (60 percent). Roan contributed nearly half of LMU’s offensive output, as she finished with a game- and career-high 27 points on 12-of-22 shooting. Roan added six rebounds, four assists and three steals in 35 minutes of action to pace the Lady Railsplitter offense.
Senior MaRanda Boddie backed that effort with 11 points and six rebounds despite being handcuffed by foul trouble throughout the contest. Senior Kalasia Green provided eight points and six rebounds in 20 minutes in LMU’s second unit. Freshman Josey Harding grabbed nine rebounds in 11 minutes to pace the Lady Railsplitters in that department.
The Lewis Flyers accumulated a 36.4 percent (24-for-66) mark from the floor, but a 23-for-34 effort from the charity stripe and 23 offensive rebounds aided Lewis’ attack. Six different Flyers tallied 10 or more points in the contest, and Mariyah Henley led that effort with 15 points to go along with a game-high 17 rebounds.
Jess Reinhart contributed 11 points and 13 points, as Henly and Reinhart led the Flyers to a 61-42 advantage on the glass. Jamie Johnson (13), Nikki Nellen (12), Kristin Itschner (11) and Alyssa Dengler (10) were the other four double-digit scorers for the Flyers, as that six-man tandem combined for all but seven of Lewis’ points. Despite struggling from the field overall, the Flyers went six-for-13 from beyond the three-point arc.
A jumper by Roan with 6:27 remaining in the first half pushed the Lady Railsplitters in front, 21-20, but the Flyers rolled off a 19-6 run, capped with a Nikki Nellen three-pointer, over the next 5:48 to jump in front, 39-27. Junior Samantha Satterlee stopped the bleeding, draining a trey with 30 ticks left in the first stanza to send the Lady Railsplitters into the break trailing 39-30.
Roan sparked a 7-0 run for the Lady Railsplitters with five points in a 1:39 span to open the second half, cutting the deficit to 39-37 with 18:21 remaining in regulation. Lincoln Memorial and Lewis remained locked in a tight contest over the next four and half minutes, as Roan drained a lay-up with 13:58 left to keep it 46-44 in favor of the Flyers. However, Lewis pulled away with a 7-0 run of their own, closed off with another Nikki Nellen three-pointer at the 12:20 mark of regulation.
The Lady Railsplitters hung tough over the ensuing stretch, clawing back to within five following a pair of Josey Harding free throws with 7:01 left. But, four Flyer free throws and a jumper by Kristin Itschner gave Lewis a 65-54 advantage with only 5:15 remaining on the clock. Lewis built as large as a 16-point lead before settling for a 77-65 victory.
The Lady Railsplitters fell despite dominating the battle in the paint, 44-26, and forcing 19 Flyer turnovers which were converted into 24 points. LMU’s second unit edged the Flyers, 18-15, while Lewis’ 23 offensive boards were used to tally 17 second-chance points.
Lincoln Memorial University will step away from the court briefly for Christmas break. The Lady Railsplitters return to action on Jan. 4, hosting the Lenoir-Rhyne University Bears in South Atlantic Conference at 6 p.m.