MISHAWAKA – The Grace College women’s basketball team wrapped up its best Crossroads League season in program history with a 64-58 win over Bethel on Saturday.
The Lady Lancers finished fourth in the CL with a 12-6 record, 16-14 overall. Grace will host a first round game in the CL Tournament for the first time in team history. The Scott Blum-led Lady Lancers host fifth-seeded Marian at 7 p.m. on Tuesday.
Two players for Grace registered double-doubles, including Allison Kauffman’s 15 points and 10 rebounds and Juaneice Jackson’s 13 points and a career-best 13 boards.
The opening half was tightly contested until Grace opened up an eight-point lead with four minutes left in the period. Bethel recovered, however, knotting the game at 28-28 at halftime.
The Lady Pilots (12-18; 7-11 CL) opened the second half with five quick points, but Grace’s defense clamped down to change the game entirely. The Lady Pilots were held to a single point over a span of 8:30, and the Lady Lancers went on a 15-1 run to take the lead for good.
Bethel showed resolve in front of its home crowd, fighting back to within 53-52 with 3:40 left in the game. But Jackson scored on Grace’s next possession, and the Lady Lancers went on to win by six. Grace made seven free throws over the last two minutes to preserve the season sweep of Bethel.
Micah Pollard had her best game of the season, scoring nine points in seven minutes off the bench, and Lindsey Schaefer produced 11 points and nine boards.
Darian Patton registered seven points, and Gabby Bryant tallied three points, four assists and four rebounds.
Grace outrebounded Bethel as a team by 23. The Lady Pilots hoisted 32 shots from the 3-point line in the game, making 10 treys. While Grace only made 39 percent of its field goals, Bethel struggled even more at 32 percent. The Lady Lancers also had 20 more free throw attempts than the Lady Pilots.
Allison Kauffman shot 5-of-9 from the floor, and Juaneice Jackson was 6-for-12.
Prior to this season, Grace’s best league season was in 2011-12 when they finished with a 10-8 mark.