Ugly is our pretty as Ball State women beat rival Toledo

Seniors Brandy Woody, Katie Murphy recognized at final home game

By Rick Yencer

MUNCIE, INDIANA (SPORTS) - An explosive second half by Ball State sophomore Nathalie Fontaine scoring a game high of 26 points easily beat arch rival Toledo on Senior Day for women's basketball.

The 69-56 finish showed a mixed defense, scoring in the paint and finishing at the foul line as coach Brady Sallee said the third straight win was the best play of the season.

"Ugly is our pretty," said Sallee, about the tough play, limited turnovers and 21 out of 26 at the free throw line when it counted.

The women Cardinals, now 14-15 and 9-9 in Mid American Conference play, are second in the west division and fifth seed going into Monday's tournament. Ball State plays Kent State in the first round game.

This was a team was won out last season, got into the WNIT and finished in the Sweet 16 with first year coach Sallee.

This year, the team started 0-3 after playing Purdue and Pittsburgh, later finding conference play a win-lose proposition.

But Saturday's game on Senior Day with guards Brandy Woody and Katie Murphy recognized, brought three players in double figures and Woody just shy of a 1,000 point career. Woody scored 11 while junior guard Shelbie Justice counted 14.

Murphy was scoreless playing the high post and only 16 minutes. Last year, she had four doubles and a career high rebounding performance at 15. Murphy also was key in the WNIT win against Minnesota with six points and sex rebounds. 

Woody ranked second in team socring next to Fontaine with 10.9 points a game. She went into Saturday's game with 987 points and came just two away from the 1,000 mark. 

Toledo had problems shooting with only 19.4 percent in the first half. Ball State beat Toledo in the paint 32-18 and at the foul line, 21-13. Toledo guard Andola Dortch had a team high of 14, while forward  Inma Zanoguera had 12 and center Brianna Jones finished with 10.

Murphy said Saturday's win was great, given Toledo repeatedly beat the Cardinals during her career. She also thought the team was playing at its best, ready for tournament play on Monday.



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