Flames Come Up Short at Cleveland State, 83-80

Senior Shamiea Green was a perfect 6-of-6 from the free throw line in the loss at CSU.
Senior Shamiea Green was a perfect 6-of-6 from the free throw line in the loss at CSU.

Jan. 12, 2012

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CLEVELAND - Despite senior Shamiea Green scoring a team season-high 31 points, the UIC women's basketball team fell short at Cleveland State, 83-80, on Thursday night inside the Wolstein center.  The Flames had trouble containing CSU's Shalonda Winton as she netted a season-high of 29 points on 8-of-12 shooting.

Seniors Kiara Strickland and Jasmine Bailey notched double-digit scoring figures of 15 and 11, respectively.

The Flames came out with a quick 7-0 run over the first two minutes of the game on five points from Green and two from Bailey, forcing CSU head coach Kate Peterson Abiad to call an early timeout.

After the pause, the Vikings posted their first basket of the contest on a three pointer from Hontesy King at the 17:50 mark.

UIC used an 11-4 run over the next three-and-a-half minutes, capitalizing off CSU turnovers and bringing the score to 18-7 with 14:25 left in the first stanza.

Cleveland State fought its way back into a two possession game with 8:26 on the ticker and the score at 23-17.

Just when it looked like the Flames were going to execute another offensive spurt, CSU matched UIC basket-for-basket and brought the tally to 30-27 with just over four minutes left in the half.

The Vikings kept finding buckets and took its first lead of the game on a Winton trey with 2:02 left on the clock.  Just then, UIC rattled off four straight points to regain the two-point edge.

On the next possession, CSU knotted the score at 34-34 on two made free throws from Winton.  After two missed threes from junior Taylor Foulks, CSU's Imani Gordon drilled a jumper as time expired in the opening half, giving Cleveland State the 36-34 advantage at the break.

Green led all UIC scorers at the half with 17 points on 7-of-9 shooting, while CSU's Winton recorded 18 points, including three treys.

After the two squads traded baskets to open the half, the Vikings went on an 11-1 run and held a 12-point lead, 49-37, with 16:09 on the clock.

The Flames cut into the Vikings lead, using a 10-2 run and brought the score to 56-52 with 8:49 on the clock.  Just then CSU scored six-straight points on back-to-back threes, restoring their 10-point lead.

With 4:50 left in the game and Foulks fouling out, UIC engineered a 7-0 run over the next two minutes and cut Cleveland State's lead down to two, 66-64.  The Vikings then stopped the spurt and grew its advantage back up to nine points with 1:38 on the clock. During that span, Bailey committed her fifth personal foul, ending her night.

Over the next 90 seconds, the Flames would come within one possession of CSU three separate times, but failed to grab the lead.  Strickland also fouled out of the contest with 32 seconds left to play, leaving the Flames with limited reserves down the stretch.

Sophomore Kierra Robinson dropped in a layup as time expired to finalize the 83-80 loss.

UIC heads back to the court on Saturday as they travel to Youngstown State in a match set to begin at 2:05 p.m. CT.