Jeff Soderquist shouted "Get in there!" followed by "Boom!" as Kimmy Deines' 3-pointer from the corner beat the halftime buzzer.
The swish put an exclamation point on a second-quarter run that helped John Brown University's women's basketball team knock off Science and Arts (Okla.) 70-60 inside Bill George Arena on Saturday.
Sooner Athletic Conference Basketball Standings
Science and Arts^14-3^22-4
SW Assemblies of God^7-9^12-12
Last week’s games
Mid-America Christian 95, John Brown 81
Oklahoma City 87, Panhandle State 66
Science and Arts 76, Bacone 60
Wayland Baptist 95, Central Christian 59
SW Assemblies of God 66, Southwestern Christian 60
John Brown 70, Science and Arts 60
Wayland Baptist 73, Oklahoma City 66
Mid-America Christian 77, Bacone 66
Panhandle State 80, Central Christian 55
Southwestern Christian 75, Texas Wesleyan 69
This week’s games
Science and Arts 77, Mid-America Christian 59
SW Assemblies of God 73, Texas Wesleyan 70
Panhandle State 64, Wayland Baptist 55
John Brown at Bacone (n)
Oklahoma City at Central Christian (n)
SW Assemblies of God at John Brown
Texas Wesleyan at Bacone
Panhandle State at Science and Arts
Wayland Baptist at Mid-America Christian
Southwestern Christian at Oklahoma City
Texas Wesleyan at John Brown
Wayland Baptist at Science and Arts
SW Assemblies of God at Bacone
Central Christian at Southwestern Christian
Panhandle State at Mid-America Christian
The victory kept the Golden Eagles (15-9, 9-6 Sooner Athletic Conference) within striking distance for fourth place in the league standings (they're 1.5 games back of Mid-America Christian) while also snapping a seven-game winning streak by the Drovers (21-4, 13-3).
"This week was big for us," said JBU coach Jeff Soderquist. "We had a disappointing loss (77-61 at MACU) on Thursday and I think if we want to make a run for fourth place, which means we're hosting (a first round SAC Tournament game), then every game from here on out is a must-win.
"We've got to take it game by game and let things fall where they may."
Defense keyed a 20-9 scoring advantage in the second quarter and JBU would never trail again. The Golden Eagles ran a collapsing man defense to keep the ball out of the paint and combat the Drovers' size advantage inside. They also used help-side defense each time Dierra Ely tried to isolate her defender off the dribble. Ely had just two points in the first half, but finished with a team-high 15.
The strategy resulted in five turnovers by the Drovers during JBU's second-quarter surge and fueled a 35-21 halftime lead.
"I thought we did a good job of owning the paint, especially in the first half," Soderquist said. "They really couldn't get the ball inside. If they did, it wasn't around the rim, so we did a really good job of guarding the paint and that was the difference in the first half.
"They took it to the basket in the second half, especially (Ely). I knew she was going to try to take over the game, and our defense worked a lot better in the first half than it did in the second half."
Siloam Springs native Baily Cameron scored 11 of her game-high 19 points in the first half. She had four rebounds, including two to help seal the game in the final minute. Soderquist was concerned about his "go-to player" after Cameron had played 34 minutes on Thursday, but applauded Preslea Reece and Ally Teague for helping spell Cameron, the team's leading scorer.
Teague was the first player off the bench as Luize Skrastina has missed the past two games with a concussion. Teague had nine points, three rebounds, two assists, a block and a steal in 21 minutes. Skrastina could return this week, which may be essential because Teague ended up exiting Saturday's game with a possible head injury of her own.
"Ally is real utilizing the opportunity she's been given and doing well," Soderquist said. "We're going to need Louize back, especially if Ally is going to be out now."
USAO made several rally attempts in the second half, but JBU was able to answer each time. When the Drovers closed the deficit to 62-57, Jana Schammel drained a 3-pointer and Rosa Orpo followed with another to help their team maintain control in the closing minutes.
Schammel played only five minutes in the first half, but was a major factor in the second half. She finished with 16 points by connecting on 4-of-5 shooting from 3-point range.
"Jana had a really good second half for us," Soderquist said. "She got in foul trouble in the first half, so we had to sit her with those two fouls and I was debating, should I put her in with two and risk it? But I think Karina (Chandra, two 3-pointers in second quarter) came in and gave us some quality minutes in the first half and hit some big shots for us."
In the third quarter, a strange situation unfolded that resulted in USAO coach Derrick Matthews' ejection. Matthews called timeout to argue with an official after Schammel drew an offensive foul call against Ely. A JBU campus safety officer intervened and exchanged words with Matthews as the two walked back to the bench. Whatever was said resulted in a technical foul and, moments later, Matthews was tagged with another technical and ejected.Sports on 02/14/2018
Print Headline: Defense keys JBU's second-quarter surge