Saturday, December 07, 2013
Lions' sophomore forward Tara Dennis (Batavia, OH/Williamsburg) posted her third straight double-double, tossing in a game-high 26 points, as the Mount began the 2013-2014 HCAC season with a win, claiming a 74-67 home victory on Saturday afternoon against Defiance College. The Lions, 1-6 overall, 1-1 in the HCAC, returns to action on Dec. 14 when they play at conference-rival Franklin College.
Dennis helped the Lions jump out to a 38-31 lead at the half, scoring 10 points by the intermission. Heidi McManus (Bethel, OH/Williamsburg) added eight first half points, as the Mount overcame a 57 percent shooting first half by the visitors. Defiance committed 16 first half turnovers, and the Lions out-rebounded the Yellow Jackets 16-13 in the first half en route to the seven-point lead.
The Lions held a comfortable lead throughout most of the second half, until Defiance began to make a run at the deficit, and cut the Mount advantage to 58-57 with 6:36 to play. The Yellow Jackets took the lead, 59-58 on their next possession, after a lay-up, and pushed the margin out to 61-58 with just under six minutes on the scoreboard. Dennis' rebound and stickback gave the Lions the lead again, 64-63 with 3:45 to play, and the Mount held off a late charge by hitting five of their final six free throws down the stretch. Dennis also hit a key three-point shot with 1:31 to play, putting her team up by six points. Defiance had three turnovers in the closing minutes and missed their final three shots in the game.
Dennis added a game-high 10 rebounds, three blocked shots and two steals, while McManus grabbed five rebounds and recorded four steals. Four Mount players, including McManus, scored eight points each. Both players played 37 minutes each in the game. The Mount held a 21-9 bench scoring advantage and forced 29 Defiance turnovers.