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Women’s Basketball Looking Like Contenders Again
January 29, 2014
Khalilah Morrow and the Archers will play their final
two home games of the regular season Feb. 4 and 8 at
the Meramec gymnasium. The Feb. 4 game is slated for
5:30 p.m. and the Feb. 8 game tips off at 1 p.m.
Since STLCC moved to a districtwide athletics in 2011, few teams have enjoyed the level of success that the Archer women’s basketball team has experienced.
The Archers, led by head coach Shelly Ethridge, have made national tournament appearances in each of the last two years, and secured an NJCAA Tournament victory during last year’s run.
Among STLCC programs, only women’s soccer has joined women’s basketball in qualifying for multiple national tournament berths. <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
Ethridge’s success has continued this year, as the Archers enter this weekend 14-4 overall, including a perfect 4-0 record against Region XVI opponents. More importantly, the Archers appear to be playing their best basketball of the year of late, winning five of their last six games.
After their most recent win, a 79-59 vanquishing of North Central College, the Archers had emerged from their first turn through regional play unscathed.
“All but one of those games were at home, and it’s always a different story on the road, but as long as we improve and keep with our game plans, our chances are fairly good at beating these teams,” Ethridge said. “Every team is getting better and on any given night, a team can get beat.”
At 14-4, the Archers have assured themselves of a third straight winning season, with just seven regular season games remaining. The Archers have been battle tested, including nine games determined by fewer than 10 points. The team’s most notable struggles had been in the second half of games, though they appeared to alleviate that a bit in their win over North Central.
The late-season progress has been a hallmark of Ethridge-coached teams since taking over as the head coach at STLCC-Meramec prior to the department becoming districtwide.
“It’s a step in the right direction,” Ethridge said. “We’ve still had a couple of letdowns. We’re starting to come together, but we still have a lot of work to do.”
While the Archers remain far from a finished product, history would suggest that level of recent progress could place STLCC on track for a third consecutive trip to the NJCAA tourney. Their next two contests are at home in the Meramec gymnasium, against Three Rivers Feb. 4 (5 p.m.) and Wentworth Military Academy Feb. 8. That contest also is the annual Cancer Awareness Game as well as Sophomore Appreciation Day. The game tips off at 1 p.m.