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Belles hope to reach .500

Chris Khorey | Friday, January 14, 2005

Fresh off a key conference win over the Adrian Bulldogs, the Belles look to continue their winning ways. Saint Mary’s is looking to bounce back to .500 overall Saturday against the Fighting Scots of Alma College.The Belles (7-8, 2-4 in the MIAA) are currently in a four-way tie for fifth in the MIAA with Kalamazoo, Tri-State and Olivet. However, the Belles have fallen well behind undefeated conference leader Albion. With each game crucial between now and the end of the season, wins against bottom-feeder teams like the Scots (1-5), will be important.However, the Belles have been streaky all season, following short winning streaks with losing streaks. Coach Suzanne Bellina is looking for the team to get hot down the stretch this season.”This stretch, starting tonight, is so important to us,” Bellina said following her team’s victory over Albion.The Scots have been led all season by center Erica Philp, who averages 12.1 points and 7.3 rebounds per game. Philp is joined in the frontcourt by 5-foot-11 forward Michelle Dettling, who has scored 9.8 points and grabbed 6.8 boards per game this year.Senior forwards Emily Creachbaum and Maureen Bush will draw the unenviable task of guarding Alma’s twin towers. However, these two have also proven to be a force in the paint.Bush is averaging 8.8 points per game. Creachbaum is averaging 13.3 points and 5.5 rebounds per game and was recently awarded MIAA Player of the Week.”She’s so solid and consisentent,” Bellina said earlier this season of Creachbaum, “she always gets the job done.”In their last game, the Scots were destroyed 88-49 by Albion. Alma was outrebounded 39-24 by the Britons. A solid effort by Creachbaum and Bush could control the glass for St. Mary’s. However, Philp and Dettling both average more rebounds per game than the Belles forwards.Another key player in this game will be Belles shooting guard Bridget Boyce. Boyce is averaging almost 15 points per game to lead the Belles. She will most likely be matched up with Scots Freshman guard Ashley Matuzak. Matuzak didn’t start in the early season, but since earning a starting position in the backcourt she has averaged almost 10 points per game. The Belles, on the other hand, defeated Adrian Wednesday night 66-61 despite only shooting 33 percent from the field. Creachbaum scored 24 points as Bush contributed 14.