Cougars Earn Defensive in Win Over John Wood
A solid defensive effort paved the way for the No. 1 ICC women’s basketball team in a 69-57 win over John Wood on Monday (Feb. 11) evening in Quincy.
The Cougars held the Blazers to 31 percent shooting and limited them to just 23 second-half points to earn their 23rd consecutive win on the season, moving their overall record to 23-1, 6-0 in Region 24 action, and 5-0 in M-WAC play.
The Cougars were plagued with turnover problems in the early going, falling behind 10-4 before Emma Henderson knocked down a 3-pointer on a set play, assisted by Summer Stoewer, to get ICC on track. Stoewer, Abby Coates, and Henderson combined for the next scores to help ICC knot the score at 18-all after the first period.
ICC gained a 31-25 edge midway through the second period as Henderson again hit from long range, followed by a Moriah Ward score and two free throws by Marquitta Easley, but JWCC stayed at ICC’s heels at 37-34 heading into the half.
ICC asserted themselves on the defensive end to start the second half, and it paid dividends as they forced the Blazers into eight turnovers on their first nine possessions, including two shot clock violations and one five-second violation on an in-bounds underneath their own basket.
On the offensive end, Stoewer hit two free throws, Coates finished inside, and Pinnock-Branford added two points to make the score 43-36. Easley found Coates for another score and then Madison Faulkner fed Coates on a nice high-low pass to complete the 10-2 run to open the quarter and give ICC a 47-36 advantage. The Blue & Gold kept JWCC at bay, taking a 55-44 lead into the final period.
The Cougars kept a double-digit lead most of the rest of the way, as Coates returned the favor to Faulkner with a beautiful high-low feed, and Becker and Henderson hit Ward for two easy scores inside. The defense held tough down the stretch, giving ICC the win.
Becker (2 pts, 2 asts) Hare (1 pt) Faulkner (7 pts) Ward (6 pts, 5 reb) Stoewer (14 pts, 3 asts, 3 stls) Pinnock-Branford (6 reb, 4 pts) Henderson (13 pts, 4 asts) Coates (14 pts) Easley (8 pts)