SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Another strong road performance came up just short as Santa Clara women's basketball fell 71-64 at RV/22 Missouri State Friday night.
The Broncos (3-2) led at the half but the Bears (5-1) held an 11-point advantage in the second half, led by a 17-7 advantage from the charity stripe.
Despite not hitting a field goal over the final 2:53, Missouri State knocked down six free throws during the dry spell to hang on to the lead.
Santa Clara led as late as 9:42 in the fourth quarter, but after a jumper from Ashlyn Herlihy made it 52-51, the Bears went on a 9-2 run to take the lead for good.
Emily Gartner scored a game-high 20 points to go with eight rebounds. Alexa Willard scored 13 and Jasmine Franklin led all players with nine rebounds while adding nine points.
Midway through the third quarter, Addi Walters caught fire from deep and scored nine straight for the Broncos on three 3-pointers. Her final one gave her team a 43-40 lead with 4:40 to go in the period.
Walters finished with a Santa Clara career-high 19 and was 5-for-7 from beyond the arc. Tia Hay and Herlihy both scored 14 with Herlihy leading the team with eight boards.
After trailing for the entire first half, the Broncos closed the half with seven in a row, including a triple from Walters, that put them up 30-26 at the break.
Herlihy kept it going to start the second half, scoring four in a row to give Santa Clara a 34-28 lead, their largest of the night, but Missouri State responded with eight in a row of its own.
- Santa Clara is now 1-1 all-time against Missouri State.
- Both Bronco losses have come on the road to teams (RV/RV Arizona, RV/22 Missouri State) that have at least received votes in the AP and Coaches' Polls.
- Both teams shot 42-percent from the field. Santa Clara was 8-for-18 from downtown while Missouri State was 4-for-14.
- The Broncos had a 25-13 advantage in bench points.
The Broncos are off to the Titan Classic hosted by Cal State Fullerton. They play Montana Friday at 3:30 p.m. and Delaware Saturday at 2:30 p.m.
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