Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Women's Basketball Clips Owls
By Adam Hunt
Sports Reporter / Columnist
Mercer slammed the door tight shut to complete a rousing 60-38 victory over Georgia-rivals Kennesaw State at the University Center.
A vocal crowd filled the arena and the Bears gave fans plenty of reasons to stay glued to their seats throughout the crucial Atlantic Sun Conference encounter.
The result marked the second-straight win for Mercer and pushed them to a 9-8 overall record and a 6-2 mark in Conference action. The Owls fell to 5-11 on the year and 2-5 in the A-Sun.
The visitors looked decidedly sluggish in the opening exchanges as the Bears ruthlessly took control thanks to some neat offensive play from senior guard Courtney Ford inside the key.
Junior Kourtney Carter also found her range early on, helping Mercer take the lead inside two minutes with a speedy layup.
With the difference breaking the 10 point barrier after only six minutes, the hosts did not take their foot off the gas.
They led by as much as 23 points in the first half before a mini-revival from the Owls in the closing passages of play saw the advantage reduced to 19 at the interval.
Kennesaw, to their credit, maintained this momentum at the beginning of the second period courtesy of consecutive treys by Angelina Smith and Montinique Nixon.
Even after a stern talking to from head coach Janell Jones during a time-out, Mercer’s slump continued as the lead dropped to just nine points.
It was Carter who stepped up to steady the ship, notching a further eight points to add to her first half tally of 10.
In the final few minutes the Bears began to expose a lack of fitness on Kennesaw’s part as they pressed home the advantage, extending the winning margin to 22 points.
Carter was Mercer’s highest scorer with 18 points, while the imperious Ford added 14 with four assists.
Caoch Jones was pleased with the result and the general performance: “I think we’re integrating people more. When you play as a team, good things happen.”
She also identified Carter as one to watch for the rest of the season: “It’s about what teams are doing to us with Courtney Ford and LaToya Jackson. We need a third scorer, and she has stepped up.”
Judging by this result, Mercer are certainly starting to put together an impressive run of form and could well be in line to cause a stir at the Conference Championships here in Macon this March.