CONWAY, Ark. - Alexus Wilson
posted a career day and led ORU to a 2nd half lead, but the Golden Eagles could not hold on in a 62-54 loss to Central Arkansas on Saturday at the Farris Center. ORU (7-17, 6-8 Southland Conference) has fallen in 15 straight road games, the program's longest such streak since 1996, and they now sit 11th in the SLC standings with four games to play.
Wilson scored 20 points on 7-for-14 shooting, and she added four rebounds. The freshman from Muskogee, who had not hit double-figures since February 6, was the only ORU player to score more than eight points.
Bernadett Balla led ORU with 10 rebounds. As a club, ORU shot 37.3% from the floor.
Central Arkansas (17-8, 11-3 Southland Conference) was led by Courtney Duever, who went off for a career-high 36 points. Brianna Mullins added 11 points and six assists for the Bears, who shot 39.2% as a team.
Stagnant 1st half offense was again an issue for the Golden Eagles, who hit just four field goals in the game's first 12 minutes. But Wilson did her best to dig ORU out of an early hole, scoring five straight points to cut the deficit to 19-16 with 6:44 left in the half.
But outside of Wilson's outburst, the Golden Eagles never found a rhythm in the opening period. Fortunately, neither did Central Arkansas, and the Bears were only up 28-24 at halftime. Wilson had 10 for ORU, who shot just 30.8%, while Duever had 12 for UCA, who shot at a 34.5% clip.
ORU fell behind by eight points early in the 2nd half but rallied to tie the game, 36-all, on a Sarah Shelton basket at the 12:32 mark. After hanging close for the next several minutes, the Golden Eagles finally took the lead, at 42-40, on a Christian Key three-pointer with 9:18 left.
The lead swelled to 48-44 on an Atoe' Jackson jumper with 6:48 remaining, but that would be the high watermark for the Golden Eagles. UCA scored the next eight points, capped by a Mullins three throw, to surge ahead by a 52-48 count.
The Sugar Bears ended the game on an 18-6 run, as ORU hit just two field goals in the game's final six minutes and never reclaimed the lead. Duever scored 15 points in the game's final 6:13.
Shelton blocked four shots in the game and now has 86 for her ORU career, which places her 9th on the Golden Eagle career list.
ORU is now 7-2 all-time against the Bears.
The Golden Eagles return home for their final home stand of 2013-14 on Thursday, February 27, when Lamar invades the Mabee Center. Game time is scheduled for 5 pm CT and tickets are available by dialing 495-7ORU.