Vikings settle for split at LU

Monday, February 13, 2006

ST. CHARLES -- A strong start Saturday propelled the Missouri Valley College women's basketball team to a 69-63 win at Lindenwood, ending a three-game conference losing streak.

The Lady Vikings shot 53.1 percent from the field to take a 17-point lead into halftime, and needed almost all of it. Valley was plagued with adversity throughout the contest, committing 28 turnovers and suffering from a 29-17 disparity in foul calls and 35-14 deficit in free-throw attempts. Four Lady Vikings finished with at least four fouls while none of the home team's players had that many.

Fortunately, the Lady Lions coughed the ball up 32 times and hit an unexceptional 60 percent of their charity shots. Junior Ashley Comer, a former all-state forward from Mexico, tallied 27 points and 10 rebounds for Lindenwood (9-18, 7-10 HAAC).

Senior Judith Crespo hit the 20-point mark for the third game in a row, pacing Valley with 21 points and seven assists. Sophomore Theresa Gittens added 14 points for the Lady Vikings (13-14, 8-10), who are two games behind Baker for the coveted fifth-place spot and a first-round bye in the HAAC Post-season Tournament.

The Valley men didn't shoot well all game, but led by nine at the half because the eighth-ranked Lions were also struggling.

Lindenwood shook off its yips and made 48.3 percent from the field during the second half, compared to 34.5 percent for the Vikings, and pulled out a 64-60 decision.

Senior Johnny Viehland had 14 points and 14 rebounds and junior Dustin Bevard added 11 points and 13 boards as the league-leading Lions (20-7, 15-2) won their ninth straight.

Junior Damon Collins had 18 points and junior Jeremy Massingale contributed 14 points and nine rebounds as Valley (15-12, 9-9) dropped its third in a row. The Vikings have non-conference tilt today at Harris-Stowe State, while the Valley women play Tuesday at Park.

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