Location: Harrington Center (Cincinnati, Ohio)
The Lions overcame a 31-25 halftime deficit to defeat Manchester 75-62 to open play in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference. A year ago, the Lions did not get their first conference win until February, so getting off to a quick start was a big accomplishment. They utilized a dominant fourth quarter effort in which they nearly doubled up the Spartans to take the win.
How it Happened:
The game started off with the Lions outscoring Manchester 17-14 in the first quarter. Maddie Haberthy (Cincinnati, OH/ Mercy) jump started the offense, knocking down three shots from behind the arc for nine first-quarter points.
The second quarter would not be as kind for the Lions. The teams battled back and forth through the first 5:29 of the second quarter. The Lions held a slim 24-23 lead, but the Spartans then closed the half on an 8-1 run to take a 31-25 into the half.
As the second half opened, MSJ Head Coach Dan Benjamin turned to his bench for a lift. He started freshmen Aliyah Huff (Cincinnati, OH/Roger Bacon) and Alehia Tucker (Covington, KY/Holy Cross), and the duo combined for 10 points in the third quarter on 5-of-6 shooting. They also got a lift from Hayley Hudson (Ross, OH/Ross), who was seeing her first action in almost two weeks after an injury. Hudson pitched in five points of her own in the quarter. All told, the Lions outscored the Spartans 19-15 in the third, cutting the lead to two points going into the fourth quarter.
The fourth quarter would see The Mount play what may have been their best quarter of the young season. They turned up the defensive pressure, forcing seven turnovers in the quarter. They also shot the ball extremely well, going 12 of 16 (75 percent) from the field. Huff scored eight points, going a perfect 4 of 4 from the field. Lainee Studer (Pleasant Plain, OH/Little Miami) had an outstanding fourth quarter, scoring eight points, pulling in four rebounds, and dishing out four assists. The Lions outscored Manchester 31-16 in the fourth, pulling away late for a 75-62 victory.
Five Lions scored in double figures in the game, led by Haberthy who scored a career-high 18 points. Studer again had an extremely well-rounded game for the Lions, as she added 15 points, nine rebounds, six assists, six steals, and one block. Hudson (10 points), Tucker (13 points), and Huff (12 points) also scored in double figures in the game.
Mount St. Joseph (4-2, 1-0 HCAC) will host Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology (4-3, 1-0 HCAC) on Wednesday at the Harrington Center. The game is scheduled to tip off at 7:00 PM. Go to msjsports.com for all of your live game updates!