ATHENS, Tenn. - Offensive struggles continue to rear its ugly head as Union College dropped its third game in a row, suffering a 53-52 Appalachian Athletic Conference loss to host Tennessee Wesleyan College Saturday.
Union are losers of four of its last five games, putting it at 10-7 overall and 3-3 in league play. Tennessee Wesleyan improved to 6-10 overall and 2-3 in the AAC.
The Lady Bulldogs shot below 30 percent and under 35 percent for the third consecutive contest, connecting only 17-of-57 shots for a 29.8 shooting percentage. For the first time in four games, Union drained 10 trey but made just 27.8 percent (10-of-36) from 3-point range.
The shooting woes extended to the foul line as well for Union, which made half of its free throws in going 8-for-16.
Union led 33-27 at the half but managed just 19 second-half points, the fewest points it scored in a half this season.
Despite the low offensive output, Union held the lead late in the game. A Brooke Smith (Pineville, Ky.) bucket made it 52-50 with 2:09 to play. However, Tennessee Wesleyan tied the game on a pair of Katie Blevins free throws with 12 seconds remaining.
After a Union turnover, Heather Gibson was fouled and sent to the line for two free throws with 7 seconds to go. She missed the first but sank the second to put Tennessee Wesleyan up 53-52.
Capri Savage (Orofino, Idaho) attempted a shot at the buzzer but it was no good as Tennessee Wesleyan held on for the one-point conference win.
Foul trouble and tight defensive play limit Smith to four points, her lowest point total of the season. Carley Blankenship (Lexington, Ky.) led Union with 17 points with Savage going 5-for-11 from 3-point range for her 15 points. Smith did led the team in rebounding with nine.
Blevins led Tennessee Wesleyan with 15 points, while Gibson and Ragan Elliott each contributed 10 points.
Tennessee Wesleyan hit 37.5 percent (18-of-48) from field and only made 2-of-16 (12.5 percent) from long range. The hosts connected on 75 percent (15-of-20) from the line.
Union returns to action Wednesday when it plays host to Covenant (Ga.) College in non-conference action. Game time is set for 5:30 p.m.