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SMC BASKETBALL: Saint Mary’s falls into fourth place

Chris Khorey | Monday, January 17, 2005

In the midst of a stretch coach Suzanne Bellina has called “so important to us,” the Belles lost a key game to Alma Saturday 77-71 in overtime.

Saint Mary’s (7-9, 2-5 MIAA) entered Saturday one game ahead of Alma (7-6, 2-5) in the conference standings. The loss drops Saint Mary’s into a four-way tie for fifth with Olivet, Tri-State and Alma.

Star forward Emily Creachbaum said the team is disappointed with dropping an opportunity to pick up a win against Alma, an MIAA bottom feeder.

“[Saturday] would have helped established us in the middle of the pack,” she said.

With the conference season heating up and the Belles still on a roller coaster ride, Creachbaum said the team is trying to concentrate on one game at a time.

“Every win in our conference will help us move up,” she said.

The Belles’ schedule should be easier over the next few weeks, as Saint Mary’s has already played its road games against MIAA powerhouses Albion, Hope and Calvin.

“We’ve already played the top teams in our conference on the road,” Creachbaum said.

Like so many games this season, the Belles started the Alma game hot and led 36-31 at halftime but lost the lead after halftime.

“The momentum switched at the beginning of the second half,” Creachbaum said.

Saint Mary’s was able to force the game in to overtime, but Scots forward Katey Peacock took over in the extra frame. Peacock finished the game with 25 points on 7-of-18 shooting from the field.

“They would set three screens, and she would cut,” Creachbaum said. “We felt like we were just chasing her around, and she scored a lot of baskets.”

On a more positive note for the Belles, four players, Bridget Lipke, Maureen Bush, Alison Kessler and Bridget Boyce, scored in double figures, with Lipke leading the team with 17. Creachbaum pitched in eight points and nine rebounds.

Other than Peacock, Michelle Dettling scored 15 points and Erica Philp had 13 points.