TexAnns start second half on fire in win over Stonehill

Tarleton State senior guard Morgan Ashmore led the team in scoring a second straight game Friday, netting 13 points in a win over Stonehill. || Courtesy NATE BURAL/Tarleton Athletics

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(December 18, 2015) — Senior point guard Raven McGrath has been involved in a lot of clutch plays at the end of many close games over her Tarleton State career.

But the senior probably never even imagined winning a game on a tie ball, until it happened in a 55-50 victory over Stonehill (Mass) Friday in the South Point Holiday Hoops Classic.

After Tarleton (6-3) missed two free throws and was left clinging to a three-point lead and in need of a stop to hold on in the final seconds of regulation, McGrath tipped the ball away from Stonehill (6-4), chased after it and earned a tie-ball call.


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The possession arrow favored the TexAnns, and the script played out perfectly for Tarleton. Stonehill, which had won four of its previous five games, had no choice but to foul, and McGrath, a 92 percent shooter from the stripe, knocked down both free throws to put a wrap on the second straight win by Tarleton.

The TexAnns play once more at South Point Arena on Saturday. They meet Montana State-Billings at 5:30 p.m. (CST).

Morgan Ashmore remained hot with 13 points, giving her 32 over two games in a span of four days. Ashmore hit arguably her biggest shot of the season when she knocked down a 3-pointer for a six-point TexAnn lead late in the fourth.

Tarleton struggled through the first half, trailing 25-21 at intermission.

But the TexAnns could do no wrong in the opening minutes of the third quarter, when a pair of Bailey Wipff 3-pointers were part of a 16-2 run that ended in a Meagan O’Dell triple for a 36-27 lead.

The TexAnns were in the lead the rest of the way. Wipff and Travanti Downs each scored eight and McGrath added seven off the bench.

Tarleton had 16 steals as part of an uncharacteristic 27 turnovers by Stonehill that led to 20 TexAnn points. That helped make up for the TexAnns shooting just 36 percent and being out-rebounded 39-27.


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