With three out of the five regular starting squad being newcomers, the Rattlers have had a difficult time having their game play reflect their talent this season, most recently in Saturday’s 55-54 loss to Angelo State.
“It’s just been a really long season so far,” said DeAnna Patterson (Sr., Converse, Texas), who had 17 points on Saturday.
Patterson’s disappointment in the loss mirrors the team’s as Saturday’s game marks the Rattlers’ ninth loss so far this season; a loss that was one point away from being a victory at 55-54.
The first half looked grim for the Rattlers as the Rams led by as much as 14 and closed the half with the same lead. Coming into the second half down 35-21, the Rattlers charged ahead as the team they have the potential to be. Of their 15 turnovers for the game, only five came from the second half and the Rattlers showed its aptitude for finding the bucket.
After scoring only 21 points in the first half, St. Mary’s outscored Angelo State in the second 33-20, having a series of big boards. Patterson thrice hit the bucket from beyond the arc while Liz Boyd (Jr., San Antonio, Texas) had 13 points and freshman Morgan Pullins (Franklin, Mich.) added another 10.
St. Mary’s (1-9) closed the gap and came within four from Angelo State, 40-36, with 13 minutes left in the game, and gained the lead it had been fighting for six minutes later at 48-47. Five-foot-six guard Felicia Jacobs (Jr., San Antonio, Texas) was a spark to this comeback, pulling down 13 rebounds, adding eight points and two assists.
“Going into halftime and seeing we were down 14 just kind of motivates us to come out harder,” said Patterson, who hit 6 of 14 from the floor, “and do whatever it takes.”
As the lead swapped back and forth, the Rattlers played like the team one would expect with the talent they possess, but with a minute left in the game, they returned to being a team still trying to find its way.
With a tie game at 54-54, every possession was crucial and refraining from fouling monumental. Both teams already in bonus, a foul at 1:25 left in the game put the Rams to the line, and they banked the shot that would silence the Rattlers’ comeback.
Deflated from seeing the Rams regain the lead, the Rattlers had four seconds to strike back but a turnover from the Rattlers stole their shot at their second win of the season.
“At the end of the games, it’s hard to prep for that, that type of experience,” says Patterson, “so it’s better to experience it and then now we know what we can fix.”
The Rattlers will see if experience plays a part in their next game against East Central on Dec. 12 at 6 p.m. at Bill Greehey Arena.