SMC vs. Kalamazoo
Belles Beat Hornets for Third Straight Victory
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Maggie Ronan and Kelley Murphy provided a big one-two punch as they combined to score 42 points for the Belles as Saint Mary's defeated Kalamazoo 90-59 on Thursday night.
The Hornets kept the game close for most of the first half in spite of the Belles' attempts to put the game away early. With the game tied 12-12, Saint Mary's went on a 10-0 run over a 2:47 span midway through the first half to go up 22-12. Kalamazoo would respond with a run of their own to get within a point of the Belles at 26-25 with 7:02 to go before the half. It was then the Belles' turn to turn up the pressure by out-scoring the Hornets 18-9 over the rest of the first half to take a 44-34 lead at the half.
The Belles came out of the gate in the second half to score six straight points as they would maintain a double-digit lead for the remainder of the contest on their way to the 90-59 win.
Saint Mary's hit all 18 free throw attempts in the first half en route to a 26-of-32 night from the charity stripe. The Belles also out-scored Kalamazoo 42-12 in the paint, 42-9 off turnovers, and 19-4 on second chance buckets. Saint Mary's forced the Hornets into 33 turnovers in the game, the most by a Saint Mary's opponent this season. The team's 20 steals are also a season-high.
Maggie Ronan was 8-of-8 from the free throw line as she was just a point off of tying her career-high, which she established just two days ago, scoring a game-best 22 points. She also had game-high honors for steals with eight, doubling her career-high total in thefts in a contest. Kelley Murphy was right behind Ronan with 20 points of her own while leading all players with nine rebounds. Jessica Centa (Plymouth, Ind./Plymouth) added 14 points while going 6-of-6 from the line in the win. Liz Wade set the tempo for the Belles with seven steals and six assists on the night.
The Belles (12-5, 5-3 MIAA) will travel to league-leading Calvin on Saturday for a 1:00 p.m. contest against the Knights for their third contest in five days.