ANKENY, Iowa—The Faith Eagles women's basketball team tied their best offensive performance of the season Saturday afternoon, rallying from a 66-60 fourth-quarter deficit to beat Central Christian College, 83-80, with an inspiring effort that also earned Coach Monty Kaufman his first collegiate win.
Faith's first victory of the season came Friday, December 13, in and 83-76 victory over NAIA Holy Family College while Coach Kaufman was out of town for a family graduation, but all the hard work by him and his team paid dividends as the Eagles tied a season-high with 83 points on 42 percent shooting (6-of-19 from three-point distance).
Central Christian College came out on fire, connecting on 50 percent of its shots in the first quarter, including 4-of-5 from three-point range, outscoring the Eagles 28-21 in the first quarter.
Faith chopped into the Saints' lead in the second quarter, thanks to a pair of three-pointers by Lyndi Shepard, who connected on five of them for the game as part of her team-high 19 points. The Eagles trailed 43-40 at halftime.
The third and fourth quarters were all about heart and effort for Faith. Alicia Smith scored 12 of her 18 points in the second half, with numerous timely baskets and accuracy at the free-throw line. The Eagles were 8-of-9 from the charity stripe in the fourth quarter. One of the biggest plays of the game came with 4:09 remaining as Lyndi Shepard knocked down a three-pointer to break a 71-71 tie. The Eagles kept the lead the remainder of the game.
Freshman Makenna Laib was a sparkplug on both ends of the court, coming up with numerous hustle plays. Her stat line of 9 points, 14 rebounds, and 8 steals was her best all-around performance of the season. Fellow freshman Rachel Kleczka finished with a double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds.
The Eagles (2-9) host two games in Ankeny this week with a Tuesday matchup against Union College at 4:00 p.m. and Friday's Gym Dedication game against Calvary University at 5:00 p.m.