SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Lady Bears head coach Kellie Harper gave birth to her first son late Monday night. Tuesday morning it was back to work for Kellie's husband and the baby's father Jon Harper, who took over coaching duties in a 75-65 home loss to Quinnipiac.
MSU led by as many as 12 points early in the second half before faltering down the stretch thanks to missed layups, missed free throws and rebounding. Quinnipiac, who finished 30-3 and reached the NCAA Tournament last season, reeled off a 30-5 run to capture the lead, one they would not surrender.
The Bobcats were led by Independence, MO native Brittany McQuain, who scored 28 points and added 12 rebounds.
The Lady Bears (1-4) were led in scoring by sophomore Kenzie Williams, who scored 12 of her 15 points in the first half.
The Missouri State defense controlled the game early as Quinnipiac began the game 3-for-16 from the floor and missed 13 consecutive shots while the Lady Bears used a 9-0 run and six-minute QU scoring drought to lead 13-5 with 10:42 to play in the first half.
Quinnipiac buried back-to-back treys 36 seconds apart to close to 27-25, and another triple from Phillips made it 35-29 before Williams followed with MSU’s seventh long ball of the first half with 32 seconds to play for the 38-31 halftime lead.
Tyonna Snow scored 17 seconds into the second period to give the Lady Bears their largest lead of the game at 40-31, and Williams drained her third triple of the contest at the 16:55 mark to push the lead into double figures at 45-35.
After Bry Snow’s layup made it a 47-35 lead with 16:32 remaining, the rest of the game belonged to the Bobcats. Quinnipiac held the Lady Bears to five points over the next 14 minutes, turning a 12-point deficit into a 13-point lead with a 30-5 run that ended with a 65-52 score in favor of QU with 2:23 to play. The Bobcats ultimately out-scored MSU 40-18 over the final 16:32.
Senior Hannah Wilkerson added 12 points on a perfect 4-for-4 from the beyond the arc. Brittany McQuain finished with 28 points and 12 rebounds for Quinnipiac.
Missouri State shot 37.3 percent for the game and held QU to 38.6 percent overall, though the Bobcats did shoot 24-for-29 from the foul line.
Up next for the Lady Bears is a Dec. 3 visit to No. 3/4 Louisville (6-0). Tip-off against last season’s NCAA runner-up is set for 6 p.m. Central.
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