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SMC Basketball: Tri-State looms next for Saint Mary’s in MIAA

Joe Meixell | Friday, December 7, 2007

After a home-opening loss Wednesday night to rival Calvin, Saint Mary’s travels to Tri-State University on Saturday to play the Thunder (3-4) in their second MIAA conference game.

The Belles (2-4) beat Tri-State twice last season, 83-79 and 83-66, with junior Erin Newsom scoring 30 points and 11 rebounds in their second matchup.

“We have really stopped thinking about the game against Calvin and we are now focusing on Tri-State,” senior guard Alison Kessler said. “We are excited to play again against another good opponent and really step up our performance.  As a team, we need to become more consistent to be a top team in the conference. Tri-State is a good team and we are expecting to face a challenge.”

The Belles will have to be wary of Tri-State’s 5-foot-9 guard Sarah Howe. Last season Howe averaged 13.6 points and 7.0 rebounds per game to lead her team. This year, she averages 19.5 points per game. Howe, however, was not able to lead her team to a winning season last winter as Tri-State ended with a 6-19 record.

Tri-State is averaging 66.9 points per game compared to the Belles’ 64.2 per game. Saint Mary’s has averaged 39.9 percent from the floor, giving the Belles an advantage over Tri-State’s 35.4 percent. The Belles have also shot 71.8 percent in their free throw attempts and posted 27.8 percent from beyond the arc.

Kessler is averaging 15.5 points per game with 5.5 rebounds.

Newsom is second behind Kessler, averaging 11.5 points with 9.8 rebounds, while sophomore Anna Kammrath tallies 10.5 points and 7.7 rebounds per game.