The NAIA Division II 6th-ranked Foresters had their unbeaten streak come to an abrupt end with a 61-45 loss to Taylor University in their Mid-Central Conference opener.
HU jumped out to a 9-2 lead over the first five minutes of the game, but it was all downhill from there for the Foresters. Following a Trojan timeout, Taylor stepped up its defensive intensity and held a tentative HU offense scoreless over the next 10 minutes. Lauren Davenport finally ended the drought with a layup at the five minute mark to pull within eight at 19-11, but it was as close as the Foresters would get the remainder of the game.
The Trojans scored on their next two possessions to go up 14, but HU battled back to within nine with 2:31 on the clock. A traditional 3-point play by Alissa Goeglein gave Taylor a 12-point margin at the break.
The Trojans didn't lose any momentum as they started the second half. They scored the first five points of the period to extend their advantage to 17. HU finally put together six consecutive points to pull within 11 and had a chance to get within singles digits, but came up empty on a trip to the foul line.
The Foresters narrowed the gap to 10 at 39-29 with 12:20 to play, but again Taylor answered with a 9-2 run to push the lead back to 17. The Trojans continued to add to the margin with their largest lead coming at 58-37 with 4:10 to play and they finished with the 16-point win.
Sarah Miller led three double digit scorers for HU with 11 points. Davenport and Jenna Donaldson both added 10. Nellie Eskew came off the bench to lead Taylor with 19 points. Bethany Ballard finished with 11 points and a game-high nine rebounds.
The Foresters shot a chilly 29% (16-56) from the field while Taylor went 23-55 for 42%. HU also struggled at the line going 11-20 for 55%