The Lady Bears played four games in six days last week. It all started on Monday, January 23rd when they hosted National Christian College Athletic Association Division II #2 ranked Randall University (Moore, Okla.) on Monday might, followed by NAIA Division II Central Christian College (McPherson, Kans.) on Tuesday, and a pair of road Midwest Christian College Conference games over the weekend.
Following two tough loses early in the week, Friday evening the Bears traveled to Belton, Mo. to face Calvary University. The Warriors and the Bears both got off to a hot start. After the first quarter, the Warriors led the Bears 17-16. Both teams cooled off in the second quarter, and the Warriors would go into halftime leading the Bears 24-20. In the second half, the Warriors forced the Bears into too many turnovers, and the Bears struggled to knockdown shots. In a seesaw game down the stretch, there were several lead changes before Calvary emerged victorious, 47-38.
On Saturday afternoon, the Bears were in Joplin, MO to face Ozark Christian College. Even though it was a quick turn around from a tough loss the night before, the Bears were showed no ill effects. They were able to establish a post presence early and often against the Ambassadors. It wasn’t until the 4th quarter that they first relinquished the lead. In the 4th quarter alone, there were nine lead changes and four ties. Three Lady Bears would foul out of the game, and for the last 1:07, the Bears played with only four players on the court. In the end, the Bears were able to make their free throws down the stretch to hold off a desperate Ambassadors squad 58-57. The Bears were led by freshmen Sarah Easterwood’s (Rolla, Kans.) 21 points and 6 rebounds and Leilani Carrasco’s (Eaton, Colo.) 13 points, 10 rebounds, and 4 assists.
“We are without a doubt improving and taking steps in the right direction,” said head coach Marcus Mitchell. “Are there still things we need improve on? Yes, but I am proud of the ladies for continuing to work hard and together each game.”
The Bears will travel back down to Joplin on Friday afternoon at 4 pm for a neutral site game against Baptist Bible College (Springfield, Mo.). Earlier in the year the Bears handily beat the Patriots at home. This will be the Bears last game away from Hockett Auditorium before tournament play in two weeks.