Lady Tigers Play Complete Game in 79-62 Regional Semi-Final Win Over Moody
The Grace Bible College Lady Tigers took on the Archers from Moody in a regional semi-final game Friday night at Northland International University in Dunbar, Wisconsin. The Tigers split their two games with Moody during the season and had a hard time containing Moody's potent lineup that featured the regional Player of the Year in 6-3 center, Jenna Bloodworth, and a pair of perimeter sharpshooters in Rani Hadley-Parish and Emily Bloodworth. The Tigers have been a balanced team most of the season and that depth of talent and the ability to play pressure defense for 40 minutes led to a 79-62 victory, allowing them to advance to Saturday's championship game.
The Lady Tigers made it known early that they came to play as they jumped out to a quick 6-0 lead. If not for missed layups, the Tigers would have jumped out to an early double digit lead, but the Archers stayed in the game early. Grace hit a cold spell with a 16-12 lead and would not score for several minutes as Moody took a 19-16 lead. The two teams would exchange baskets until late in the first half when the Tigers forced some turnovers and scored on fast breaks to gain a 37-33 lead at the half.
The Lady Tigers kept up the intensity in the second half and this time they finished most of their easy shots as they built a double digit lead the first 10 minutes of the half. The lead swelled to as many as 19 points in the second half as the Tigers kept the pressure on the Archers all night, forcing 20 turnovers while committing a season low five of their own.
Molly Holtrop (Cedar Springs H.S.) played a dominant game scoring 26 points and handing out a handful of assists while committing zero turnovers and causing several Moody turnovers. Amy Leszinske (Ravenna H.S.) also played a solid game with 17 points and 14 rebounds. Anna Iwaniw (Kent City H.S.) chipped in with 15 points, including a back breaking three pointer as the shot clock expired as the Tigers made their second half run.
"This was the complete game we have been looking for all season," Coach Renzema said after the victory. "We picked a good night to play well and we knew we would need to in order to beat Moody. They have a lot of firepower and fortunately, we were able to do some things very well tonight to get the win."
"I am very proud of how our girls executed the game plan tonight. We knew that Jenna Bloodworth would get some points inside, but at least we didn't make it easy for her and we contained their perimeter scorers fairly well. It was a great team win."
The Lady Tigers will play defending National Champion Maranatha Baptist University on Saturday at 1 PM central time for the regional championship. Live streaming is available via the Northland International University web site.