by Anthony Sizemore, Student Sports Reporter & M. B. Miller
The Alice Lloyd women’s hoops team hit the road for another important conference test versus the Brescia University Lady Bearcats last night. After suffering a surprising loss to Midway College on Saturday, the Lady Eagles went into this one with a sizable chip on their shoulder. Propelled by a huge first half offensive performance, ALC rocketed to the lead and never looked back, defeating their rivals 109-92.
Heading into the final stretch of the season, the Lady Eagles knew the importance of this contest. First half action unveiled a dazzling display of offense from ALC as the team lit up the scoreboard, leaving Brescia reeling. Chaos was also caused by ALC’s stifling defense as Coach Mills sent his team out on the floor in a triangle and 2, which virtually shutdown Brescia’s top two scorers, senior Olivia Moore and superb sophomore guard Julie Whitfill. By halftime, the Lady Eagles had surged to a 50-28 lead.
In the second half, the Lady Bearcats came out looking for a fight. Despite ALC’s superior shooting and hard-nosed defense, Brescia managed to outscore their opponents 64-59. Julie Whitifill, held to only 4 points in the first half, put her team on her back and went off for 31 in the final stanza. The Lady Eagles stood strong, though, and protected their big lead. In the end, Brescia could not bother ALC’s Nickell and Booth, who combined for over half of their team’s final tally. It was a confidence-boosting win for Alice Lloyd as they gear up to play IU Southeast on Saturday, a team who sits just behind them in the KIAC rankings.
With the win, ALC puts itself neck-and-neck with conference leaders Asbury and Point Park.
Senior forward Ariel Nickell led the way for Alice Lloyd (12-7, 7-3 KIAC), putting on a clinic with 33 points and 15 rebounds. Carla Booth scored 28 points to go with 3 assists, while ever-impressive freshman Taylor Arthur had 13 points along with 12 boards. Freshman forward Amber Shepherd also contributed to the victory with 13 points.
Brescia (5-15, 2-6 KIAC) was paced by Julie Whitfill‘s game high 35 points, which included 6 bombs from long range.
A deciding factor in this game was ALC’s stellar offensive output as the team shot 61% from the floor and 47% from behind the arc.
History Watch: Ariel Nickell is now poised to break Robert Marcum’s all-time scoring record at ALC!
The Lady Eagles get back to business on Saturday, February 1st, in a big-time conference battle with IU Southeast in Pippa Passes. The game will tip at 2 PM.