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SMC Basketball: Mahoney leads Belles to win

Observer Staff Report | Sunday, February 5, 2012

Senior forward Patsy Mahoney put up a career-high 29 points in Saint Mary’s 59-55 conference win over Olivet on Saturday.

Mahoney shot nearly half the team’s points, went 78 percent from the field and made 83 percent from the foul line. She brought a spark to an offense that was otherwise only shooting 31 percent for the game.

The Belles (11-11, 7-6 MIAA) reached the .500 mark for the season after beating the Comets (6-15, 4-8 MIAA) in a win that required them to focus on the fundamentals.

Senior forward Kelley Murphy’s 14 boards added to the team’s plus-nine rebound margin over the Comets for a 12-6 difference in second chance points for the Belles.

In the first half, the Belles and Comets exchanged leads until Mahoney hit a three point shot, increasing the gap to five points. By the end of the half, Saint Mary’s had taken a 33-23 lead.

The Belles led by 18 points in the second half, but with two minutes remaining, Olivet managed to climb back into the game. With 13 seconds left on the clock, Saint Mary’s held Olivet down 57-54. Olivet got the ball off a Murphy turnover, then turned the ball back over to the Belles. Mahoney went up for two foul shots, made them both and sealed the 59-54 victory.

Another key factor for Saint Mary’s was its 22-30 shooting from the foul line, compared to Olivet’s 8-14.

Now 7-6 in MIAA play, Saint Mary’s is making its final push to reach the four-team playoff for conference champion held from Feb. 23 to 25. Three MIAA games stand in their way.

Saint Mary’s will face Adrian at 7:30 p.m. at home Wednesday in the Think Pink Game for breast cancer awareness.