IPFW erased an 11-point second half deficit which trimmed a Ball State lead to 42-41 in the second half on Monday at Worthen Arena in Muncie. However, the Cardinals were able to hold off the Mastodons and prevail 53-46.
The Mastodons got off to a sluggish start in their first road game of the year and trailed 6-0 just two minutes into the game. Rebecca Bruner scored the first two points of the game for IPFW and Haley Seibert hit a 3-point field goal early, but IPFW was forced to play from behind and trailed 26-19 at the half.
The Mastodons (1-2) made halftime adjustments and came out firing in the second half after just shooting 29 percent from the floor in the first. IPFW was able to cut the Ball State lead to four with nearly 14 minutes remaining, but the Cardinals expanded the lead back to 10 with 9:26 to play.
Rachel Mauk made a layup off an assist from Seibert and Stefanie Mauk followed up with a 3-point field goal that made the score 42-37. IPFW got within 42-41 after a fast break score from Amanda Hyde, but the Mastodons couldn't stop Nathalie Fontaine down the stretch.
Fontaine scored 15 points for the Cardinals on 6-of-13 shooting. She scored 11 straight points for the Cardinals from the 10 minute mark in the second half to the three minute mark. Shelbie Justice iced the game for Ball State by hitting three free throws during the final second of the game.
Hyde led IPFW with 15 points and five rebounds, while the only other Mastodon to reach double figures was Erin Murphy, who lit up Ball State with 14 points off the bench. Rebecca Bruner, Stefanie Mauk, and Seibert all finished the game with five points.
The Mastodons will host Coastal Carolina on Saturday at 2 p.m.