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1/16/2013 11:09:00 AM Junior College basketball: IVCC women rally for win, men fall short
Murray OK after health scare
By Brad Martin Sr. NewsTribune Sports Writer
Princeton graduate and IVCC sophomore Michael Murray had a health scare Tuesday during the Eagles’ game against Highland in Oglesby.
“Michael started having chest pains as we were getting ready to come out for warm-ups in the second half,” IVCC coach Tommy Canale said immediately after the game. “He said he was also having trouble breathing so he was taken to IVCH. I came back out to the floor about the 13-minute mark, but my mind wasn’t into it. All I could keep thinking about was Micahael and how he was doing.”
Around 11 p.m. Tuesday, Canale said Murray was doing better.
“I just left IVCH and Michael is doing good,” Canale said. “He had a rare spasm in his chest that caused him to be short of breath and have those convulsions in the locker room. They gave him a shot to calm down the muscle spasms, but the EKG on his heart was normal so he is doing much better, which is great. I was really torn about going back to the game because he was holding on to me and he is just a great kid and I didn’t want to see him go like that. It just makes you put things into perspective, but I just wanted to let everyone know he is doing good and that’s all that matters.”
Highland Community College is widely considered a powerhouse in basketball, but in both the men’s and women’s games Tuesday night in Oglesby, IVCC showed fans it has teams that can play a bit as well.
The Lady Eagles shook off a rusty start for a thrilling 74-73 come-from-behind victory over the Lady Cougars in Arrowhead Conference action, while the men lost a hard fought 87-81 decision.
Women IVCC 74, Highland 73 The Lady Eagles at one point trailed the Lady Cougars 33-18 in the first half before going on a 10-0 run tho help close the gap to 39-32 at halftime.
One thing IVCC had going for it was dominating on the boards and limiting Highland to one shot at the basket.
“That was definitely a big advantage for us tonight,” Lady Eagles coach Pat Cinotte said. “Arnisha (Thomas) had a tremendous game tonight. I also thought (Ottawa alumna) Asya Williams played big tonight also. Aside from that, we had 15 turnovers in the first half and just four in the second.”
Marquette graduate Jessica Jessen helped get the Lady Eagles jump-started with a steal and assist to Thomas for a short jumper.
Sydonia Daniels then got the stickback to cut the Lady Cougars lead to one point at 39-38.
Thomas then gave IVCC the lead at 41-40 on an old-fashioned three-point play. Highland’s Iesha Barkley was the offense in the second half for the Lady Cougars as she scored 21 of the team’s 34 second half points.
Barkley’s NBA range 3-pointer gave the lead briefly back Highland at 50-48.
Moments later, Princeton graduate CJ Rhodes served up a nice dish to Brytney Bennett for a layup then drained a 3-pointer of her own for a 55-53 lead.
The Lady Cougars’ Kaitlyn Schulz later came off the bench and nailed two consecutive 3-pointers to give Highland the lead at 66-62.
Later on, Daniels missed a free throw attempt, but Thomas again got the stick back to make it a 71-69 deficit.
With less than 30 seconds left in the game, the Lady Cougars led 73-71. Ottawa alumna Kara Kistenfeger was wide open in the corner and calmly hit the game-winning 3-pointer.
The defense did the rest as it spoiled any comeback hopes Highland had.
“It wasn’t a set play or anything like that,” Kistenfeger said. “It was just one of those plays where the defense collapsed in the paint and I was open and lucky enough to have the shot to go in.”
Thomas led IVCC with 28 points and 19 rebounds, while Daniels added 21 points and eight rebounds.
Men Highland 87, IVCC 81 The Eagles also had a slow start, but they were not as fortunate as the women as they fell to the Cougars 87-81.
The Eagles trailed 38-25 at the intermission, but slowly started to chip into the Highland lead.
Two people were missing from the IVCC sidelines though as coach Tommy Canale and Princeton graduate Michael Murray were still in the locker room.
At about the 13-minute mark, Canale stepped out of the locker, but Murray was still absent after being taken to the hospital.
Perry Adams made a power move in the paint to make it an 11-point IVCC deficit. Then St. Bede graduate Alec Schwab got into the scoring mix with two runners in the lane before Adams converting an old-fashioned three-point play to cut the Highland lead to 58-54.
Nearly every time the Cougars needed a shot to stop an Eagles, rally, they turned to Deon Andrews and Brandon Ward, who combined for 50 of Highland’s points.
“Those guys are pretty tough players,” Canale said. “I thought Perry Adams did a nice job and I think Alec Schwab once again proved what a great player he is. I told him if teams start sagging on you, and need to drive and create your shots and I think he did that tonight.”
The Eagles got within four points but were unable to get any closer as the Cougars took the contest 87-81.
Schwab led IVCC in scoring with 29 points, while Adams had 18. Corey McCrary scored 17 and JoVonn Griffin added 12.
Brad Martin Sr. can be reached at 220-6939, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @NT_SportsEditor.
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