LipscombSports.com
Lady Bisons learn lessons from exhibition opener with Harding

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Nov. 9, 2006

Final Stats

GALLERY

The Lipscomb Lady Bisons first exhibition game was a true learning experience.

In an exhibition game with Harding University Thursday night at Allen Arena the Lady Bisons fell 69-62. It was the first meeting between Lipscomb and Harding in a women's basketball game. Harding is an NCAA Division II school.

The Lady Bisons play Alabama-Huntsville Saturday afternoon at 4:15 in an exhibition game at Allen Arena. The Bisons open the regular season at 2 p.m. against Tusculum.

The Lady Bisons jumped out to an 8-2 lead thanks to 3-point shots by Catie Woods and Julie Martin. The Lady Bisons built a seven-point lead at 12-5 on a tip-in by Tiffany Arnold at 11:32.

Harding, which had hit 31 3-point shots in their last two games, started hitting on the perimeter. Harding closed the gap to 12-10, but Rachel Davis scored on a lay-up at 8:41 for a 14-10 advantage.

Harding shot 29 3-pointers for the game, hitting 13. The Lady Bisons hit 9-of-31.

"We knew they were a 3-point shooting team," Bennett said. "We can't leave 3-point shooters open for threes."

Harding took the lead for the first time at 16-14 as Kinsey Tucker hit a 3-pointer at 7:07. Harding led by as many as 10 points in the first half, taking a 29-19 with 2:39 remaining on a 3-point shot by Kelsea Lyda.

Both teams combined for 33 3-point attempts in the first half. Lipscomb made 4-of-18. Harding hit 7-of-15.

Harding also held the advantage on the boards, winning 22-18 in the first half.

Harding took 31-23 lead into the dressing room at half time. That score would not change until approximately 2 ½ minutes into the second half when Woods hit a 3-pointer to cut the Harding lead to 31-26.

"We had a long dry spell," Lady Bisons coach Frank Bennett said. "That just killed us. We had lay-ups and open shots. We have to have players step up and make plays and not continue that pattern.

"I thought in the second half we had players trying to step up and make plays like Catie Woods, Tiffany Arnold, Penny Jones and Dana Carrigan. But we could never get over the hump."

With 16:36 left in the game Woods connected on a 3-pointer to trim the lead to 32-29. Harding countered with two more points, but Woods hit her third trey at 16:02 to cut the lead to 34-32.

The Lady Bisons kept the game close, cutting Harding's lead to 48-47 on a jumper by Toia McGowan at 6:13.

"What hurt us was when we would cut their lead to one, or tied it, we would have a bad transition and give them an easy shot at the other end," Bennett said. "We have to play the ball after the score."

Harding, continuing to connect on 3-point shots, kept the Lady Bisons from ever taking the lead in the second half. A 3-pointer by Dana Carrigan tied the game for the Lady Bisons at 58-58 with 2:20 left.

Again Harding, which had lost its first two exhibition games in the last minute, refused to fall this time, rebuilding their advantage to seven points at the buzzer.

The Lady Bisons placed three players in double figures. Woods led with 16 points, hitting 5-of-16 shots from the field, 4-of-14 from 3-point range. Carrigan added 12, connecting on 4-of-17 shots, 4-of-13 3-pointers. Julie Martin, who red-shirted last season, chipped in with 11. Martin also made a game-high three steals.

"Julie Martin played really well on both ends of the floor," Bennett said.

Penny Jones grabbed a game-high 12 rebounds as the Lady Bisons held a 41-37 lead.

Lyda scored a game-high 18 points for Harding. Catherine McMenamy added 16.

The Lady Bisons shot 31.1 percent (19-of-61) from the field. Harding shot 38.2 percent from the field (21-55).

"We missed at least 15 lay-ups or power shots," Bennett said. "A lot of them were not that badly contested. We gave them confidence by just hanging around without scoring."