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SMC Basketball: Improved Belles face young Britons

Alex West | Friday, February 13, 2009

On January 14 Saint Mary’s (14-8) lost its first conference game of the year to Albion (11-10) 77-72. On Saturday, the Belles will look for revenge.

“They did a great job of getting to the free throw line against us last time,” Belles coach Jennifer Henley said. “We just didn’t play well defensively for 40 minutes.”

The Belles are riding the momentum of a three-game winning streak, and have won six of their last seven games since playing Albion.

Senior Erin Newsom and freshmen Patsy Mahoney lead the charge Wednesday night with 22 points each in a 77-71 win over Adrian. Newsom also pulled down 11 rebounds to have her sixth double-double of the season.

“Patsy and Erin both did a good job for us on the offensive end.” Henley said. “[Newsom and Mahoney] both attacked the basket and hit the open shots.”

Albion on the other hand is trying to bounce back after a tough, two-week stretch. The Britons lost four in a row before a victory over winless Kalamazoo Wednesday night. Since their last meeting with the Belles, the Britons are just 3-4.

Regardless of Albion’s recent play, Henley is sure her team won’t be overlooking the Britons.

“Albion is a good young team that has a lot of options on offense,” she said. “We need to focus more on transition defense and contest their outside game.”

The Belles have already clinched the No. 2 seed in the MIAA tournament as well as achieving other school milestones. With three games left in the regular season, the Belles have already set the school record for conference victories with 12 and have tied the school record for total wins in a season (14).

Saint Mary’s will try to continue to add to these totals Saturday. The tip-off is slated for 3:00 in Kresge Gymnasium at Albion College.