Belmont’s Darby Haggard leads the Bruins past TSU – Photos by Mike Strasinger
From Belmont Athletics
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Belmont University women’s basketball fought their way to a 68-60 victory over Tennessee State in the first round of the Ohio Valley Conference tournament led by Freshman of the Year Darby Maggard (Larwill, Ind.) and sophomore Co-Defensive Player of the Year Sally McCabe (Mt. Juliet, Tenn.).
McCabe (18) and Maggard (16) both posted double-digit points on the evening. Sophomore Sierra Jones
(Huntsville, Ala.) led the team on the boards with eight rebounds, followed by junior Frankie Joubran
(Detroit, Mich.) with seven.
Redshirt sophomore Kylee Smith (Alpharetta, Ga.) assisted on six shots and posted seven points.
The Bruins and Lady Tigers went basket for basket to open up the first quarter. Tennessee State took the early lead 10-6, but in the last six minutes of the quarter the Bruins went on a 16-0 run to take a 12 point lead, 22-10. McCabe recorded 10 of the Bruins 22 points in the first quarter.
After four minutes of the second quarter ticked away Smith hit a jumper to add the Bruins first points, despite the draught Belmont held the Lady Tigers to one basket maintaining their 12 points lead. Two free throws from Jones boosted the Bruin lead to 14. Tennessee State cut the lead to six as they went on a 9-to-1 run to end the second quarter.
Tennessee State continued their run to start the second half cutting the Bruin lead to one. A jumper from Maggard opened the lead back up to three.
Maggard and Joubran took over and put the pressure on the Lady Tigers as they started sinking shots left and right. In the second half of the third quarter Maggard posted eight points and Joubran with five as Belmont regained a 10-point advantage. Back-to-back threes from Maggard opened the game back to a seven-point lead.
Great hustle plays on defense by Jones gave the Bruins multiple opportunities to score throughout the second half of the contest.
Belmont was firing on all cylinders in the fourth quarter as six different Bruins posted points. McCabe dropped six, Maggard and Joubran had four, freshman Jenny Roy
(Brentwood, Tenn.) with three, and finally Jones and junior Madison Blevins
(Knoxville, Tenn.) with one.
The Bruins shot sixty percent from the field and fifty percent from three in the second.
Belmont will play next on Friday, March 4 at 2:00 p.m. CT in the semifinal game against the winner of Southeast Missouri State University and SIU Edwardsville. The game will once again be broadcast on the OVC Digital Network.