Based on the season’s pattern, where they have alternated wins and losses all through the season, the St. Catharine women were supposed to win Saturday at Cumberland University in Lebanon, Tennessee.
But for the first time during the current campaign, Lena Bramblett’s Patriots dropped back to back decisions, falling to the Bulldogs 49-42. And it wasn’t just the lose one/win one pattern that made Bramblett believe her team should have won the game. “I have said all year that we need to be more consistent each game,” said the Patriots’ mentor. “You have to take care of the ball and make some shots.” The statistics definitely support the less than stellar effort turned in by the Patriots against Cumberland who has now won three consecutive games to improve to 7-3. St. Catharine, 5-6, committed 29 turnovers while shooting 33 percent from the field (17-51). Those were the exact field goal numbers for the Bulldogs but the difference came at the foul line where Cumberland made 13 of 25 while the Patriots shot only nine from the charity stripe, making five of those. But despite the lackluster stats, the Patriots still maintained a chance to win until the final seconds. Courtney Milam’s basket with two minutes to play brought the Patriots within two points at 44-42. But from that point St. Catharine was able to get just one more field goal attempt while making two turnovers. The Bulldogs made five of six free throws in the final 33 seconds to ice the game. Danielle Brown scored 13 points but was the only Patriot in double figures. Machera Calhoun added eight points and a team high five rebounds. Cumberland held a slight 39-38 edge in rebounding. Both teams were cold from long range as the Patriots were 3-11 on trey attempts and the Bulldogs were 2-12. St. Catharine now moves back into Mid-South Conference play where they are currently 1-1. The Patriots play at West Virginia Tech (3-7, 0-1) Thursday and at Rio Grande (8-2, 1-0) Saturday.