(South Bend, IN) The Holy Cross Women's Basketball Team visited the IUSB Titans today in the hopes of breaking a three game losing streak.
The Saints were looking to avenge an overtime loss to the Titans on November 1st. In that game Holy Cross lost by a point, and today was a good day to avenge that heartbreaking loss. This game did not disappoint for the second time in a row, but this time the Saints got on the winning end beating the host Titans of IUSB 67-61 in overtime.
Holy Cross showed they were ready to go from the onset scoring the first four points and gaining and early 4-0 advantage. The Titans battled back, however, as neither team could gain a lead larger than three points for the first ten minutes of action.
The Saints were the first to deliver a major blow as they went up 9 points after going on a 11-1 run at the end of the half to lead the Titans 37-28 heading into the break.
"I thought we ended the half really well. We have had trouble the past three games finishing off halves, and I thought the girls did a great of doing that in the first half," said Head Coach Aimee Litka
Sophomore Lindsey Steffen (Nappanee, IN) continued her solid play as of late finishing the first half with 10 points and hauling in 5 rebounds. Sophomore Kristin Nitka (Chicago, IL) provided a great spark off the bench scoring 8 points and going 2-3 from beind the three point line.
The second half opened up very well for the visiting Saints as they pushed their lead to as much as 13 points in the first 3 minutes of play. The Titans did not go down that easily as they went on an 11-0 run in the next five minutes to cut their deficit to only a point with thirteen minutes remaining.
The game was up in the air for the rest of the contest. IUSB went up as much as six points, but were up two points with under a minute remaining. Sophomore Francesca McCarthy (Terre Haute, IN) scored a lay-up with 49 seconds left in the game tying the game at 56-56. Neither team could gain the advantage for the next 49 seconds as the game stayed tied at 56-56. Lke the first game on Novemeber 1st it had to take overtime to determine a winner.
This time, however, it was all Saints in the overtime. They scored the first six points going up 62-56 in the first three minutes. The Saints never looked back from there as they snapped their three game losing streak beating crosstown rivals IUSB 67-61.
"I was really proud of our girls today. We have really showed how much we have improved since November. IUSB is a very good team, and the fact we beat them at their place showed how hard the girls have worked over the past couple of months. We have had trouble closing games out, and today the girls did a nice job of finishing the game in overtime. I am just really proud of them," said Coach Litka.
It was a different game as Coach Litka stated. In the first game the Saints were outrebounded by IUSB 48-23. In this game, Holy Cross outrebounded the Titans 45-42. The Saints did a much better job of taking care of the ball in the second game as well. They had 31 turnovers in the game at Holy Cross in November, but just committed 16 turnovers in this game.
"I had our SID show us stats for turnovers, points off turnovers, offensive rebounds, and second chance points. It really showed that when we did a better job of making teams go one and done, and not turn the ball over that those were the games we won. That is all we worked on in practice yesterday, and it was nice to see the girls apply that in the game today," said Coach Litka.
Steffen led all scorers with eighteen points. She also recorded her fourth double-double in a row, and eleventh overall by grabbing a game high 14 rebounds. Nitka finished with 11 points, and junior Lauren Malinowski netted 10 points and grabbed 7 rebounds respectively.
The Saints are now 6-16 overall. The six wins is a school record. They are back in action as they take on fellow CCAC opponent at home on January 25th. Tipoff is scheduled for 5:30 p.m.