Buccaneers fall just short of comeback against Temple, 74-66

BRENHAM, Texas — Freshman guard Kristine Ezimako's season-high 21 point outing was not enough as Blinn College women's basketball (5-5, 0-1) lost to Temple College, 74-66, on Monday night  in the Kruse Center.

"We played really hard in the second half, but we can't keep getting down in the first quarter the way that we did," said Jeff Jenkins, Blinn head coach. "I was proud of our effort in the second half and the crowd was great. Kristine Ezimako was really special tonight and keeps getting better every game."

Alexus Brigham also tallied double-digit points with 14, while Missy Archie and Imani Wimbish-Gay each chipped in seven.

"In the second half we picked each other up and our point guards were key to the game by helping us overcome the deficit," Ezimako said.

Blinn outscored Temple, 44-40, in the second half, but it wasn't enough for the win after a slow start.  

Temple started out strong to hold a 20-15 lead in the opening quarter. In the second quarter, the Leopards continued to outscore Blinn for a 34-22 lead at the half.

In third quarter, the Buccaneers scored 18 points, while holding Temple to seven points, to close the gap. Brigham sunk a three-pointer to spark Blinn's offense to go on a 12-0 run. Amaya Armstrong scored five straight points to finish the run for the Buccaneers to trail by three points, 39-36. Brigham and Ezimako hit back-to-back layups for Blinn to finish the quarter behind 41-40.

The Buccaneers opened the final quarter on a 4-2 run after Archie and Ezimako each sunk two-point shots for Blinn to take a 44-43 lead. Temple and Blinn rotated the lead until the Leopards went on a 7-0 run to pull ahead 63-55 and keep it for the remainder of the game.

Blinn resumes conference play against Kilgore College on Wednesday, Dec. 5, at 5:30 p.m. on the road.          

Blinn has competed in intercollegiate athletics since 1903 and captured 38 NJCAA national championships since 1987.