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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted on: Sunday, February 13, 2005

SMU women edge UH, 52-50

 •  Game statistics

By Brandon Masuoka
Advertiser Staff Writer

The University of Hawai'i women's basketball team came looking for its second shocking victory of the week. But Southern Methodist's Janielle Dodds had other ideas.

Dodds scored 14 of her game-high 18 points in the second half and helped thwart a last-second shot as visiting SMU turned back upset-minded Hawai'i, 52-50, last night to earn its first-ever victory in Honolulu.

Dodds scored six of SMU's final eight points and combined with teammates Kendall Shead and Shonte Roberts to smother Milia Macfarlane's last-second layup attempt before 768 at the Stan Sheriff Center.

After defeating conference leader Louisiana Tech on Thursday, Hawai'i lost another close game and fell to 9-10 overall and 5-7 in the Western Athletic Conference. Three of Hawai'i's last four losses have been by two points.

The Mustangs, who are 1-8 in Honolulu, improved to 17-6 and 8-5.

"It's so hard to win on this island," said Dodds, whose team suited up just nine players because of injuries and sickness. "We knew they were going to be fired up coming off a win against Louisiana Tech. Five of our players were sick. But we overcame it and pulled it out."

Macfarlane scored a team-high 15 points, and Jade Abele and Amy Sanders each scored 10 for Hawai'i. Sanders added 11 rebounds. Sarah Davis scored 12 points and Dodds added 10 rebounds for SMU.

"We're close to turning the corner," Hawai'i coach Jim Bolla said. "Beating Louisiana Tech is one thing, and we were real excited about that. But this game kind of pushed us back a couple of steps."

On Hawai'i's final offensive play with 9.5 seconds remaining, Macfarlane received an inbounds pass from Sanders in the front court. Sanders was the first option on the play but she was guarded, so Macfarlane drove hard to the basket from the right wing. Her last-second layup attempt was smothered by a wall of SMU defenders.

"With time running out, I just had to make a decision," Macfarlane said. "I thought I had an open shot. I thought I got hit in the nose. But that's OK. We won't make any excuses."

"I thought we went straight up," SMU coach Rhonda Rhompola said of the play. "I thought we had a good double team."

Hawai'i trailed by as many as nine points in the second half, but rallied to tie the game at 50 on a 3-pointer by Janevia Taylor with 1:19 remaining.

SMU's Shead responded with the go-ahead basket from 15 feet with 1:02 remaining, and after Hawai'i missed a shot on its next possession, Alofa Toiaivao blocked Shead's shot on the other end to set up the last shot attempt for Hawai'i.

For the game, Hawai'i was just 4 of 8 from the free-throw line, while SMU shot 15 of 16.

"I'm going to have to talk to Coach Rhompola on how they play such great defense and how they don't foul," Bolla said with a hint of sarcasm after SMU finished with five personal fouls.

In the second half, Hawai'i rallied from a 37-28 deficit with an 11-2 run that was highlighted by Abele's 3-pointer and capped by Macfarlane's layup. Macfarlane and Taylor each had four points during the surge.

Hawai'i fell behind 46-42 before it engineered an 8-4 run with a 3-pointer by Sanders, a basket by Brittany Grice and Taylor's 3-pointer to tie the score at 50.

In the first half, Hawai'i took an 8-2 lead but SMU stormed back with an 18-5 run to take a 20-13 lead.

Reach Brandon Masuoka at bmasuoka@honoluluadvertiser.com or 535-2458.

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