TAMPA, Fla. – A late comeback effort fell just short on Saturday night in Florida as the West Georgia Wolves women’s basketball team fell 71-68 to the Tampa Spartans at the Bob Martinez Center.


Statistically, the Wolves and Spartans played nearly identical games, but it was the second and third quarters of Tampa that built as much as a 20-point lead that the Spartans would hold on despite a furious comeback from West Georgia.


Both West Georgia and Tampa shot 40 percent from the field with UWG having the higher three-point percentage as the Wolves shot 7-of-20 from long range. Both teams had 20 points in the paint, but Tampa’s paint presence was felt in the rebound department as the Spartans had 42 rebounds to UWG’s 30.


The Wolves had three scorers in double-figures, led by Aysha Harris with 17. Jessica Brown chipped in with 16 points, while also leading UWG on the glass with six rebounds. Kayla Carter was the final double-digit scorer for the Wolves, as the senior from Charleston, S.C. finished with 14 for the second consecutive game.


Tampa got off to a hot start with a trio of consecutive three-pointers to start the game, but the Wolves erased a slow start and an early 11-2 deficit to lead 20-15 at the end of the first quarter.


The second quarter was all Tampa as they outscored the Wolves 19-8 in the 10 minute span, holding West Georgia to a 21.4 percentage from the field in the quarter. The Spartans led 34-28 at the midway point of the contest.


It was more of the same from the Spartans as they outscored the Wolves 21-15 in the third quarter, making it a 20 point game with 3:22 left in the third quarter.


From that point, the Wolves outscored Tampa 36-19 to the finish line, cutting it to as little as two points with nine second left. The Spartans would convert one of two free throws to make it a three-point game, giving UWG the chance to tie with a trey. The final attempt from Carter would be blocked and Tampa would hold on.


It’s the first loss of the season for UWG as the Wolves fall to 1-1. Tampa moves to 2-0 to start the season. West Georgia travels to Tuskegee, Ala. on Friday night to take on the Golden Tigers in a 6:30 p.m. contest.