Women’s College Basketball: Lewis stings Truman State
By Dennis Nelson For Sun-Times Media January 3, 2014 9:22PM
Lewis' Jamie Johnson (basket) drives to the during Friday night's game against Truman State. | Dennis Nelson/For Sun-Times Media
Updated: February 6, 2014 6:34AM
Lewis started defense of its Great Lakes Valley Conference Tournament championship by greeting league newcomer Truman State rather rudely.
The Flyers offense erupted late in the first half and throughout the second to post a 98-72 GLVC win Friday night in Romeoville.
The Flyers (7-2, 1-0) improved to 6-0 at home heading into Sunday’s game vs. Quincy.
“We were more efficient (Friday), offensively, than we have been all year,” Lewis coach Lisa Carlsen said. “Not just because we made shots, but we ran our offense, got quality opportunities and made the most of them most of the time.”
Lewis hit 55 percent of its shots (39-of-71), had 22 assists and committed just nine turnovers. Truman State (6-4, 0-1) shot 38 percent and turned it over 15 times to just 11 assists.
“Honestly, a lot of it was adrenaline because this was our first conference game of the year,” Lewis forward Jess Rinehart said. “This was the best game we’ve played all season.”
Lewis rode the hot play of the three-headed monster of Rinehart, Mariyah Brewer-Henley and Jamie Johnson to its 17th straight regular-season home win dating to last season.
Henley posted another double-double of 26 points and 10 rebounds. Rinehart had 23 points to go along with eight rebounds, while Johnson had 17 points and seven assists. Henley and Rinehart combined to shoot 70 percent (23-of-33) from the floor.
“We did a good job getting the ball inside,” Rinehart said. “When Mariyah and I are clicking at the same time, it’s a good combination for us. We feel we can beat anybody on the court, and we have a lot of guards who can hit threes if they get an open shot.”
The first 10 minutes of the first half featured one lead change and six ties. With the game tied at 25 with 9:11 left in the first half, the Flyers closed the first 20 minutes with a 23-6 run to take command. Johnson had seven points and three assists during the run that helped the hosts take a 48-31 halftime lead. Truman State was no closer than 11 points the rest of the way.
Lewis’ biggest lead was 29 on three different occasions in the second half. The last came when Lauren Mead hit two free throws to give the Flyers an 83-54 edge with 8:05 left in the game.
“I think we were better with the basketball on both ends of the floor (Friday) more than we have been all year,” Carlsen said. “We got good shots, knocked down shots and were confident, which hasn’t always been the case this year.”