ANKENY, Iowa—The Faith Eagles women's basketball team picked up right where it left off before Christmas break, with a 47-40 win over Manhattan Christian (6-3) Saturday afternoon in Ankeny. It was the second win in a row for the Eagles, bringing their record to 3-6 overall.
Faith used an aggressive full-court defense and overcame some turnovers late in the game to secure the victory. Despite some tired legs and winded lungs that are typical the first game after a long layoff, Coach Fincham's team shot the ball well, connecting on nearly 49% of its shots, their highest percentage of the season.
The Eagles jumped to an early 6-0 lead, thanks to a pair of baskets by Michaela Crider, who scored a game-high 16 points on 8 of 13 shooting. Faith led 12-10 after the first quarter.
Faith stretched its lead back to five points multiple times in the second quarter before the Thunder trimmed the lead to one at halftime.
Bekah Smith had a pair of blocks in the third quarter, and Alicia Smith added three steals as the Eagles clamped down defensively, holding Manhattan Christian to just 4 of 17 shooting, as Faith built its lead to 35-30 heading into the fourth quarter.
Faith jumped to a nine-point lead after a pair of Karina Fritz jump shots, and built its largest lead of the game at 10 with 4:02 remaining. The Thunder had one final run in them though, using a 7-0 run to pull within three with just under a minute to play, before Fritz hit her third shot of the quarter to stop the threat. Fritz finished the game with 9 points, a new career high.
In the win, the Eagles got one of their best performances of the season by sophomore Bekah Smith, who finished with 7 points, 10 rebounds, 5 blocks, and 3 steals. The offense focused on attacking the rim much more frequently than usual, attempting only four three-pointers for the game.
The Eagles resume action Tuesday afternoon at the Nettleton Center with a 4:00 game against Union College. Faith defeated Union College, 65-29, in the first game of the season.