The home score on the Kates Gymnasium scoreboard hit triple figures once again on Saturday (Nov. 24) afternoon.
No. 2 Ashland University women's basketball, which set a new NCAA women's basketball record for most 100-point games in a season in 2017-18 (19), recorded its first 100-point game of 2018-19 on Saturday, in a 100-72 victory over Missouri S&T in its Thanksgiving Tournament.
"I was really proud of our girls' effort," said Ashland head coach Kari Pickens, who earned her first home victory on Saturday. "I thought we came in and executed some things well offensively. There's definitely room for improvement on the defensive end, but that's why it's a season. We get to grow and learn from every game."
The Eagles are 4-0, while the Miners are 2-2.
Ashland has won 41 consecutive home games, three away from the program record of 44 set from Feb. 3, 2011-Nov. 9, 2013. The Eagles also extended their program marks for consecutive regular-season wins to 66, and consecutive regular-season home victories to 54.
THE TOP TEN
1. Saturday's game began at a quick pace offensively, with the Eagles leading 17-14 at the first-quarter media timeout. Ashland hit six of its first nine shots, and junior forward Sara Loomis had eight quick points.
2. The remainder of the first period saw the defenses rise, and Ashland still had a 23-14 lead thanks to seven Miner turnovers.
3. At the second-quarter media timeout, with 7:14 to go until halftime, the Eagle lead jumped to 33-19, thanks in part to sophomore forward Karlee Pireu's first career 3-point field goal. Loomis had 13 points in the game's first 13 minutes.
4. By halftime, Ashland's lead was 47-29, and the numbers already were impressive – 13 assists on 18 made field goals (seven helpers from junior guard Renee Stimpert), 12 forced turnovers, and Loomis collecting 16 points, four rebounds and two blocks in 17 minutes.
5. The game was put away in the third quarter, when the Eagles outscored the Miners, 29-18, and took a 76-47 lead into the final period. Ashland was 12-of-23 from the field in the third.
6. Loomis finished the game with a career-high 27 points on 11-of-17 shooting from the floor and 5-of-8 from 3-point range, as well as 10 rebounds for her third double-double of the season, and three blocked shots.
7. For the second consecutive game, Pireu posted a career-high in points, going for 18 to go with seven rebounds, three assists and three steals.
8. Senior guard Maddie Dackin finished with a dozen points, while Stimpert had a game-high nine assists, moving her into fourth place on Ashland's all-time assists list with 406. Ashland had 26 assists on 40 made baskets, while turning the ball over just eight times.
"That's something that I really like about our offense, is that it's only as good as how well we move the ball," Pickens said. "You can't key in on one particular person, because if you do, then we are one extra pass away from a 40-percent 3-point shooter getting a wide-open 3."
9. For S&T, Maddie Raley led the way with 16 points and 11 rebounds.
10. In the first game of the Thanksgiving Tournament on Saturday, Slippery Rock defeated Wayne State, 65-63.
The second and final day of the Thanksgiving Tournament on Sunday (Nov. 25), with the Eagles playing Slippery Rock at 3 p.m.