Crowder College’s basketball team made the run the Lady ’Riders had been seeking midway through the second half on Saturday afternoon in the season opener at Robert Sneller Gymnasium.

Crowder College’s basketball team made the run the Lady ’Riders had been seeking midway through the second half on Saturday afternoon in the season opener at Robert Sneller Gymnasium.

Trailing Eastern Oklahoma State 32-13 at halftime, Crowder carved the deficit to 41-31 with 10 minutes remaining after a 10-4 run. But Eastern Oklahoma State answered with a 10-0 run of its own to extend its lead to 51-31 and pulled away for a 63-41 victory.

“We had a bad first half,” Crowder head coach Tina Robbins said. “We had 20 turnovers and dug ourselves a hole, obviously. We didn’t play well offensively.

“The second half was much better. We played them fairly close to even, but when you have close to 30 turnovers, it’s hard to beat anybody.”

Kadahah Allen, a 6-foot-2 center from Brooklyn, New York, scored a game-high 14 points for Eastern Oklahoma, including 10 in the second half.

Tanjanique Ajeto, a 5-8 sophomore guard, and Raquel Grant, a 5-6 sophomore guard, added nine points apiece for Eastern Oklahoma.

For Crowder, Mariana Silva, a 6-2 sophomore center and a native of Sao Paulo, Brazil, scored seven of her team-high 11 points in the first half.

Freshman guard Amanda Rowdern scored all nine of her points in the second half, and sophomore guard Tiffany Rhame scored all seven of hers after the break for Crowder.

To be certain, the Lady ’Riders got off to a rough start to open the season, turning the ball over on its first six possessions before the jitters finally subsided.

Eastern Oklahoma built an 8-0 lead before the Lady  ’Riders got their first basket at the 15:01 mark when Mariana Silva stepped out beyond the arc and drained a 3-pointer from the left wing.

Eastern Oklahoma had a lead of 15-5 grow to 22-8 before it swelled to 19 points at intermission.

“No doubt, (Eastern Oklahoma) is a good team and turnovers led to transition points for them,” Robbins said, “and we also gave up a lot of second-chance points. You couple those two things together, it makes it difficult to win.”

The Lady  ’Riders never made a run until long after halftime.

Crowder’s Emily Speakman scored off a putback with 11:32 remaining, the first of eight answered points by the Lady ’Riders. Rhame’s driving layup, along with four straight free throws by Rowden, closed the gap to 41-31.

But Eastern Oklahoma surged with its 10-0, highlighted by baskets inside from Ajeto and Allen, for its 20-point lead with 8:09 remaining.

The Lady ‘Riders never got any closer.

“We want to be a blue-collar team that’s on the floor after every loose ball, that’s outworking people, and we didn’t feel like we did that today,” Robbins said. “In the second half, we did in spurts, but we’ve got to do that consistently for 40 minutes.

“I commended Emily Speakman. She came off the bench and picked up a charge in the first half and a charge in the second. It’s just the little things like that that give you momentum.”