The first quarter was pretty back and forth and featured the Cyclones' best shooting period from behind the arc, while it was West Virginia’s worst quarter in the same area. Despite 7 early points from Ashley Joens, the Clones would take a 3-point deficit into the break by a score of 15-18. West Virginia’s Ja’Naiya Quinerly put up 8 early points on efficient shooting in the first.
In the second quarter, the Twister Sisters were able to get to the line, and they capitalized on their opportunities, shooting 6-6 from the stripe compared to West Virginia’s zero attempts in the quarter. Despite an abysmal 0-7 performance from deep, the Clones put up 20 points with Joens, Donarski, and Ryan each scoring 6. After holding West Virginia to 16 on the quarter, the Clones took a slight lead into the half 35-34.
The Clones came out in the second half flat, they shot 28.6% from the floor and only hit one of their 7 attempts from behind the arc. Denae Fritz and Emily Ryan each put up 5 points, but the rest of the team would only total 3 points all off of free throws. West Virginia took advantage of the slow quarter and scored 22, creating an 8-point lead in what had been a very well-contested game to that point.
The Cyclones again struggled in the final period and were never able to regain the lead. Shooting 3-15 from the floor and 1-7 behind the arc killed the offense, and West Virginia connecting on 13 of 16 attempts from the stripe buried the Cyclones' comeback bid. The Clones leading scorer in the 4th was Fritz with all 4 of her points coming from the free throw line.
The Cyclones had 3 scorers with double figures tonight; Joens 17, Ryan 13, and Fritz 11. A tough night shooting for the squad led to a sour loss.
While it was a disappointing day for Cyclone Basketball, it is always a good day to be a part of Cyclone Nation, the Twister Sisters go again on Monday at Hilton against Texas. Be there and be loud. Roll Clones.