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SMC Basketball: Saint Mary’s to face Tri-State

Joe Meixell | Friday, January 18, 2008

After another conference win and a record-breaking night on Wednesday, the Belles are back on the court Saturday as they take on MIAA foe Tri-State in their second home game. Saint Mary’s steps on the court after a 72-69 win over Kalamazoo, bringing both its conference (3-3) and overall (7-7) records to .500.

Alison Kessler led Saint Mary’s in its win at Kalamazoo Wednesday night, scoring 41 points, breaking the school’s previous record, set in the 1998-99 season by Julie Norman. Kessler’s record is just one point off the MIAA record of points in a single game. Her 41 points are also the most points scored in a game by a Division III player this season.

The Belles managed to score the first six points of the game, the biggest lead either team would have in the first half. Kalamazoo led 37-33 at intermission, and Saint Mary’s would not manage to regain the lead until Kessler’s lay-up made the score 70-69 with 34 seconds to go in the game. Two free throws by Kessler and a missed three pointer by Kalamazoo’s Kelsey Bailey solidified the win for the Belles.

Saturday will be the first time the Belles play a game at home since their conference opener on Dec. 5, when they lost to rival Calvin 67-52. The Belles’ last took on Tri-State when they defeated the Thunder 82-68 on Dec. 8.

“We are really looking forward to having another home game Saturday,” Kessler said. “We are really focusing on our defense. Tri-State is a good team, so we will need to rebound well and play solid defense to win.”

Saturday’s game begins at 3 p.m. at Saint Mary’s Angela Athletic Center.