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Offense Struggles as Women Fall to Jefferson College

December 12, 2011

Cierra Gaines  
Cierra Gaines

For the first time in more than two weeks, the St. Louis Community College women’s basketball team was finally at full strength on Saturday at Jefferson College.]

But even that wouldn’t be enough to keep the Vikings, who are currently ranked 17th nationally among NJCAA Division I programs, from cruising to a 78-47 victory on their home floor.

The Archers had difficulty gaining traction offensively early on, as they were held to 13 first-half points, which included a seven-minute stretch without a field goal. STLCC did, however, score at a markedly different pace early in the second half. The Archers opened the second half with a 15-4 run to close what was an 18-point halftime deficit to seven points at 35-28. But that would be the closest STLCC would get, as the Vikings piled on with 47 second-half points to provide the winning margin.

Freshmen guards Datona Ball (Quincy, Ill.) and Cierra Gaines (Edwardsville) each scored nine points to lead the Archers.

Assistant coach Melanie Marcy assumed head coaching duties Saturday due to the absence of head coach Shelly Ethridge, who missed the game following the death of her father.

Marcy was quick to credit the talent of the Vikings, but noted that the game could have been much closer.

“We just gave up too many second-chance opportunities,” Marcy said. “Against a team like this, you get a stop, you work hard during that shot clock, and you have to get that rebound. Offensively, we just couldn’t get a flow. Our shots didn’t fall and we missed a lot of ‘bunnies.’”

Marcy chalked up some of the Archers’ struggles to the team’s collective youth, and noted the opportunity for growth that games like this offer.

“Losses will come, especially with a young team,” Marcy said. “As long as you learn from those losses, then you can take something out of them. We’re facing tough Division I competition right now. It’s going to be hard. We end (the semester) with a home game, and our girls will be hungry for a win.”

The Archers close out December when they host Lincoln Trail at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 19, at Forest Park.