The Ball State University women's basketball team bucked off its six-game losing streak started by Eastern Michigan University just in time to fall 63-57 to the Eagles Saturday at Worthen Arena.
"We missed some easy shots and just didn't respond to the level of how physical they were inside," coach Kelly Packard said.
The second contest between Ball State (10-15, 4-8 MAC) and Eastern Michigan (18-6, 8-4 MAC) showed how little love was lost. A total of 48 fouls were called, but that didn't keep players from being thrown to the floor and being temporarily knocked out of the game to be taped up.
"Once we got in the lane, we didn't do a good enough job of shot faking and getting them off their feet because they were bigger than us," senior guard Audrey McDonald said. "They're shot blockers. We knew that. We just didn't a good enough job of getting them off their feet and attacking again."
Ball State led once in the entire game, and it was early. The largest lead came two minutes in at 7-4.
After that, Eastern Michigan took over with physical play in the paint to gain control. A 17-3 run propelled the Eagles in front and in charge for most of the game.
McDonald pulled Ball State within four points on a traditional three-point play at 35-31. That was a close as the Cardinals would get, though.
Missing free throws cost Ball State an opportunity to come away with a win. The Cardinals went 12-for-27 from the line while the Eagles finished 21-for-28.
"We've been really solid free throw shooters last year and this year," Packard said. "There were a lot of places where we left points available off the board. 15 points were available to us."
McDonald finished with 20 points, leading all scorers, while junior forward Emily Maggert posted another double-double with 13 points and 12 boards.
Cassie Schrock led Eastern Michigan with 16 points. Tavelyn James finished with 13.
The Cardinals return to action Tuesday when they play host to Northern Illinois University.