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Friday, January 22, 2010When Lipscomb coach Frank Bennett checks the statistics for the Lady Bisons last five games he sees one trend _ the freshmen and sophomores on the team have made huge steps in the transition to the college game.
Saturday afternoon at 1 those young players will be tested again when they face Campbell at Allen Arena. The Lady Bisons 4-15, 2-7 in the A-Sun.
“Morgan Faulkner has been shooting at a 50 percent field goal level with both twos and threes combined,” Bennett said. “Hannah Phillips has shot 54 percent from the field with about four rebounds and two-and-a-half assists a game in those five games.
“Chelsea McMeans has had some good games. Brittany Duerk got a lot of tough rebounds in crowds against ETSU. Chelsea Burroughs has done a good job of running the floor and giving us someone to throw the ball to ahead of the defense. She shot five or six layups against ETSU on transition and drove the lane a couple of times in our half-court offense.”
Also playing with more confidence is guard Anna Bowers. Center Kaitie Fritts was making progress until she broke her nose last week.
“Anna had a good shooting game against North Florida,” Bennett said. “She has a lot of athletic ability. Kaitie has made a lot of progress in conditioning and understanding our system.”
Duerk, a sophomore, is playing an average of 27.7 minutes per game. Phillips, a freshman, is averaging 23.8. Bowers is averaging 19.8 minutes.
“It has really helped us to have more sources of points,” Bennett said. “We are more solid with our defensive system and what we a redoing executing wise.
“Things are falling into place. For those young players to see they can do things consistently will really help us make a turnaround.”
The Lady Bisons have to bounce back from a 76-65 loss to ETSU Thursday night, a game that was closer than the score indicated.
The Lady Bisons are led by junior guard Jenna Bartsokas with 12 points per game. Duerk leads in rebounding with 5.9 per game.
“Win or lose you have to put the last game you played behind you,” Bennett said. “All these conference weekend series are a challenge with one day between games. Hopefully, we will build on the positives from the ETSU games.”
“We had a high energy level with good intensity. We pushed the ball on the break. Our rebounding was much improved. Overall our defense was pretty good. They have a high-scoring offense. We made the work for their points. And we were able to score some points against them which we haven’t always done in the past.”
Campbell, 10-7, 5-3 in the conference, is coming off a 74-67 win over Belmont Thursday. The Camels are 3-2 on the road in A-Sun games this season. The Lady Bisons have won three of the last four meetings between the two teams.
Campbell is led by freshman guard Tonisha Baker with 9.9 points per game. Junior forward Lauren Yesh and senior center Ashley Williamson are tied for the rebound lead with 6.2.
“Campbell is better than it was last year,” Bennett said. “They are a pretty skilled team.
“Campbell is a good rebounding team. They are a fairly balanced team. They can hurt you with several people. They have some confidence going. “
Written by Mark McGee, Senior Publisher/Director of Athletics