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Campbellsville University’s deep bench and strong post-game was too much for Bluefield College to handle Thursday night as the Lady Tigers defeated the Rams,70-61.
BC’s tenacious defense shut down usual top-scorers for the Lady Tigers, but junior posts Daizah Kimberland and Mary Jehlik stepped up, leading the team with 14 and 13 points, respectively.
“I’m proud of our win tonight,” CU head coach Ginger Colvin said. “This is a tough place to come play, especially considering Bluefield was undefeated at home so far this season until tonight. There are definitely some things we need to work on, but we beat a good team. The girls are a little banged up right now, so I think it is good we have a few days off to rest and regroup.”
Campbellsville was first on the board after Mackenzie Lee scored on a back-door cut, the assist from Katie Allen. Allen would go on to have eight total assists on the night for the third game in a row. Bluefield didn’t let CU stay on top for long though, putting up a quick four points in response.
The Lady Tigers had to battle from behind for the next seven minutes until finally pulling ahead 18-16 on a Kimberland basket. Kimberland went on to score 12 points in the half, also grabbing eight rebounds, seven of which were offensive.
CU managed to get on top by five points on Ellen Sholtes’ free throws, but BC senior guard Ashley White soon took control, scoring four points and assisting the ball to Maryah Mazyck for a Bluefield 6-0 run. It wasn’t long before CU found themselves five below to the Rams, 35-30.
CU trailed by one with less than 10 seconds on the clock when Mrashi Karumba grabbed a pivotal steal, relaying the ball to fellow senior guard Keisha Compton, who scored on the fast break at the buzzer. The Lady Tigers went into the locker room ahead by one, 38-37.
The initial minutes of the second half felt much like the first half as both teams battled back and forth to be on top. A Courtney Clifton 3-pointer proved to be the needed basket for the Lady Tigers to clutch the lead, putting the score at 43-42.
Although the gap remained between five and 10 points the majority of half, Campbellsville didn’t let the Rams get any closer. The Lady Tiger defense held BC, who average 73 points per game, to just 61 on the night. The loss was the first for Bluefield at home this season.
The bench proved to be the key once again, as was the last CU game versus Bluefield on Jan. 12, when the Lady Tiger bench out-scored the Rams’ 36-2. Tonight’s bench gave CU a 33 point advantage, as opposed to BC’s zero points.
Kimberland ended the game with a double-double, totaling 14 points and 10 rebounds. Jehlik finished with 13, followed by Allen with 10 points. Bluefield’s Tequila McNeal and Mazyck led in scoring for the Rams with 19 and 14, respectively.
The Lady Tigers (17-4 overall and 9-2 in the conference) will get a week off from games as they rest to prepare for another MSC match-up on Thursday (6:00) at home against No. 19 Shawnee State University.
CU Lady Tigers 70, Bluefield 61
Lady Tigers (70) — Clifton 2-5 0-0 5, Kimberland 6-13 2-2 14, Burd 0-2 2-2 2, Lee 3-8 0-0 6, Allen 3-7 2-2 10, Compton 3-5 0-0 6, Jehlik 6-10 1-2 13, Sholtes 0-3 3-4 3, Hellyer 2-3 2-2 6, Karumba 1-5 0-0 3, Craig 1-1 0-0 2. Totals 27-62 12-14 70.
Bluefield (61) — Totals 26-54 6-9 61.
Half-time — Campbellsville 38-37. 3-pointers — Campbellsville 4-15 (Allen 2-4, Clifton 1-3, Karumba 1-4), Bluefield 3-10. Rebounds — Campbellsville 35 (Kimberland 10, Lee 6, Jehlik 4), Bluefield 32. Assists — Campbellsville 19 (Allen 8, Lee 4, Kimberland 3), Bluefield 17. Steals — Campbellsville 13 (Lee 3, Allen 2, Sholtes 2, Karumba 2), Bluefield 9. Turnovers — Campbellsville, Bluefield 28.