GC women start conference play 0-2By ANDY RUSSELL
As good as the men’s basketball team has started this year, the GC women’s team seem to be going in the other direction. They have struggled in their first two MSC games, but it has been against some stiff competition.
The MSC on the women’s side is full of teams that are very, very good and are recognized nationally. Campbellsville and Lindsey Wilson are two teams that were expected to be very good and they have showcased their talent early on in the season with both teams sitting at 7-1 and 2-0 in MSC play.
GC’s first game in conference play was against St. Catharine on Dec. 2 on the road. They were carrying a three-game losing streak into the game and another loss didn’t help their cause, though it was a close loss. They were able to pull close several times, but they were never able to take the lead.
This was the first game for Kourtney Tyra off of an injury, so she saw limited time on the court, and it showed in GC’s offense. They managed to score only 29 points in the first 27 minutes of action. Even when they were able to get the offense rolling they still couldn’t muster enough power to hold serve with the Patriots.
Emily Drees scored 11 points off the bench and Gina Beining and Lindsey Fultz added 10 each as well. GC was never able to get the offense rolling until the end and it was just too little too late. The Tigers lost the game 59-51.
Their next game against Campbellsville University was, to be honest, never really a contest. The game started out rough for the Lady Tigers, who got down 2-12 after the first few minutes. They committed six turnovers in the first five minutes.
They were down big in the first half, but they managed to play themselves back into the game early into the second half with great offensive execution and stiff defensive. With 15 minutes left, GC was down by six points, 48-42, but CU executed perfectly down the stretch, closing the game on a 42-21 run.
Whitney Ballinger and Courtney Clifton were the big scorers for CU as they routed the Tigers 90-63. Ballinger had 32 points and Clifton chipped in 22 in the winning effort. Clifton’s 3-point shooting on three straight trips blew the game open and knocked the wind out of the Tigers.
GC didn’t help their cause by going 0-for-15 from deep in the game while Clifton herself went 5-of-7 from three. Gina Beining led GC with 11 points and Jessica Waddle also had 11.
Although GC has started conference play 0-2, there is plenty of time to turn things around with many games left. The ladies return to action on Dec. 16 against Pikeville College at home. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m.
Tigers start Mid-South Conference play 2-0, season at 10-0By ANDY RUSSELL
As the season wears on and the weather gets colder, the GC men’s basketball team continues heating up as they get into the heart of Mid-South Conference play. After their big win against Indiana University Southeast on Nov. 23, they jumped into MSC with two tough road games against St. Catharine and Campbellsville.
Their first match-up against St. Catharine was a very tough road test, as most are in the MSC. This game was a close match, with both teams exchanging buckets and words the whole time.
The game was tied at the half, 35-35. GC got the better of St. Catharine from the field in the first half, and throughout the game for that matter, shooting 52 percent as opposed to St. Catharine’s 37 percent. The stat of the game for GC was turnovers and the number was 30:30 total turnovers in comparison to the 16 for St. Catharine. When a team shoots a poor percentage from the field but forces 30 turnovers, that is going to make up for the shooting woes and St. Catharine did just that.
Towards the end of the game GC was looking for a play from someone and they got it from senior Matt Walls, who hit a much-needed 3-pointer at the right moment to help preserve the victory. This shot put the Tigers up 75-73 with 10 seconds left in the contest.
St. Catharine had an easy chance to tie at the charity stripe, but the pressure got to Brandon Johnson, who only hit one of his free throws. Eddie Gray was fouled quickly on the next possession and hit one of his free throws to put GC up by two.
After St. Catharine missed a shot at the end of the buzzer, the building went silent as the GC bench erupted into cheers for a great road victory, 76-74. This marks the ninth win of the season and first in MSC play for the Tigers.
Eddie Gray led the Tigers with 18 points and two assists from the point guard position. Maurice Pearson tallied another double-double with 16 points and 12 rebounds, 10 of them on the defensive end.
Once the season started on the right foot, success continued on for the Tigers. They went on to visit Campbellsville two days later and came out victorious in that hostile environment by a large margin, 80-61. The game was a tight one in the beginning and was a onepoint game at the half, but a strong showing in the second half gave GC its tenth win of the season and its second victory in MSC play.
After a hot first half from CU, GC adjusted the game plan on the defensive end and the offensive end and put CU away in the second half. Eddie Gray had another outstanding game for the Tigers and ended up with 22 points on 4-of-6 shooting from 3-point range and Maurice Pearson had 16 points to aid the Tigers to victory. This was another huge win for the Tigers as they start MSC play undefeated and make a huge statement with two road wins.
The Tigers next game will be on Dec. 16 against Pikeville College. If you are able to make it back to campus for this game, try and do so, as it will be a huge game against a very good MSC foe and a rivalry game. Tip-off is set for 8 p.m.
Don’t forget to follow the basketball teams as they play Pikeville College
and UVA-Wise over the winter break. Check the GC Athletics website for game recaps.