PIPPA PASSES, KY: On Saturday, December 8th, the home-standing Alice Lloyd College Lady Eagles battled the River States Western Division’s top team, the Indiana University Kokomo Lady Cougars. In a contest that took five extra minutes to decide the winner, the host team prevailed in overtime, 100-97.
In the opening period, IUK jumped out to an 11-4 advantage in the first five minutes. The home club would get within 14-12 following a jumper from junior guard Katie Moore before Kokomo closed on a 6-2 burst to lead 20-14 after ten minutes.
In the second stanza, Indiana quickly extended their advantage to ten (26-16) as they looked to put the game away early. However, the ladies from Caney Creek showed their determination as they clawed their way back into contention. Senior guard Courtney Vasquez came off the bench to score 10 points in the half, and the hosts only trailed 43-40 at intermission.
In the third quarter, the home fans had more reason to cheer. After trailing the entire way, ALC would take their first lead of the night (60-58) courtesy of a strong post move from sophomore center Alex Clifton at the 2:40 mark. Vasquez would then score six of her clubs final eight points to give the home club a 68-62 lead entering the final stanza.
IUK opened up play by promptly roaring back to knot things up at 70. From that point, the two clubs battled furiously to gain an advantage.
With just 2:59 showing and the score tied, the clubs would trade points. When Clifton scored inside at .42, the Lady Eagles led 87-86. Eleven seconds later, Kokomo responded with a nice hoop from guard Lauren Goodwin to regain the advantage, 88-87.
Following an Alice Lloyd miss inside from Clifton, Kokomo forward Brynda Kruger snared the rebound and was fouled with .13. She drained the first attempt, but misfired on the second, giving ALC a chance.
After the timeout, with the crowd on its feet, the Eagle faithful were rewarded when Moore wasted no time beating her defender and scored on a clutch drive to the hoop to tie things once more at 89. IUK took a timeout and advanced the ball to half court. On the inbounds play, they quickly looked to guard Q Merriweather to give them the victory, but ALC sophomore guard Haley Hall stripped her of the ball with a beautiful defensive play to force overtime.
In the extra period, after two more ties, Alice Lloyd finally broke through. At .57, Clifton connected on a power move inside to give her squad a 97-96 edge. On the next play, IUK missed and Clifton snared the board. She quickly fed the ball to Moore who was fouled and sank the second attempt for a 98-96 lead. Each team would then add another free throw apiece.
Trailing 99-97, Kokomo did not go down easy. First, Merriweather looked for a bomb to give her club the lead, but she misfired. Teammate Karson Williams ended up with the ball and launched her own trifecta at .04 to try and gain the upper-hand for the visitors. However, the home faithful witnessed Moore come up with a big block that Clifton picked out of the air with only 2 ticks remaining. The center then was fouled and went 1-2 from the charity stripe to set the final score.
For ALC (5-3; 3-1 RSC), Vasquez led the way with her career-high 21 points. She sank 4-4 from the field and 12-15 from the foul line. Moore and Hall were right behind as each added 20 points to the effort. Moore also was joined by freshman guard Hannah Kash, as they dished off 3 assists apiece. Junior forward Jayla Spurlock played well as she knocked in 11 points and grabbed 9 rebounds while tying Kash with 2 steals. Clifton chipped in with 10 points, 5 rebounds, and 2 blocks while sophomore forward McKayla Akers swatted 3 shots of her own.
After shooting just 33% in the opening half, Alice Lloyd heated up considerably, connecting on 54% in the second, to finish at 44.8% (30-67) for the game and 31.8 % (7-22) from long range. From the charity line, they sank 66% (37-50). Additionally, they registered 40 rebounds, 10 assists, 8 steals, and 9 blocks.
Kokomo (7-3; 4-1 RSC) was led by Tia Chambers with 19 points. Her club connected on 40% (36-90) from the field and 25% (6-24) from long range. From the charity line, they sank 67.9% (19-28). Additionally, they registered 46 rebounds, 12 assists, 10 steals, and 3 blocks.
The Lady Eagles return to action on Thursday, December 13 against the Welch College Flames at 5:30 pm. They follow that up on Saturday afternoon in a 1:00 pm showdown with the Georgetown Lady Tigers.