After a sluggish start, the Belmont women’s basketball team rallied in the second half of this season’s second installment of the Battle of the Boulevard to rout Lipscomb 61-39.
“We started off very slowly and had to work ourselves back into the game,” said coach Brittney Ezell.
The win was Belmont’s second win against Lipscomb this season. Now the Bruins stand 15-10 overall.
Threes from Hannah Phillips and Alex Banks jump-started Lipscomb’s early surge and pushed the Bisons to 10-6.
Belmont trailed for the first eight minutes of the game, until redshirt sophomore, Jordyn Luffman, sank a 3-pointer to put the team up 11-10.
Once the Bruins pulled ahead, there was no looking back.
Luffman’s three sparked a Bruin 15-2 run.
Baskets from Molly Ernst and Torie Vaught gave Belmont their first double digit lead of the night. Lipscomb trimmed the lead to 27-22 with two field goals.
With only a difference of six at the half, the Bruins returned to the court with a more defensive mindset.
“We knew that we had to focus on our defense and get that going because that’s what we were struggling with,” said Luffman.
Lipscomb drained a 3-pointer to open the second half in an attempt to rally against the Bruins who were scoreless until the 15:32 mark where Natalie Cohlmeyer and Vaught knocked back consecutive threes.
Belmont’s defense was able to cause a multitude of frustration fouls sending the Bruins to the charity stripe three times in a row where Belmont was able to increase their lead 52-36.
A Coleman 8-3 run was all the Bruins would need to seal the 61-39 victory.
Belmont racked up a total of 47 rebounds, 29 of which were defensive.
Luffman led the team in rebounds with a total of 16 for the game and a career-high of 16 points. Following Luffman was senior Jordan Coleman, who was named the OVC newcomer of the week for the eighth time this season, with total of 6 rebounds and 10 points. Senior Katie Brooks added 11 of her own.
Despite Lipscomb’s 2-20 overall record, Ezell didn’t write off tonight’s game as an easy win because the Bisons always show up to play the Battle of the Boulevard, she said.
“We really don’t even look at records when it comes to our next opponents, we try not to,” said Ezell. “When it’s a Lipscomb/Belmont game you can throw the records out. It all a matter of coming out and playing hard.”
The Bruins plan to use this win as a catalyst into their next conference game.
“It’s definitely a confidence booster,” said Luffman. “Hopefully we’ll keep a winning record going.”
The team will resume conference play on Saturday at Tennessee State at 7 p.m.
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