MACON, Ga. – After stringing together a two-game winning streak at home last weekend, the women's basketball team faces a big test on the road this weekend. The Bears will battle first-place Belmont Thursday night and pre-season favorite Lipscomb Saturday afternoon. Game Notes
Mercer (10-7, 7-3 A-Sun) currently sits in fourth place in the Atlantic Sun, but knocked off first-place East Tennessee State last Saturday, 61-57. Sarah Russell narrowly missed a double-double with 11 points and nine rebounds against the Lady Bucs, while Erin Keller exploded from 3-point range – going 4-for-4 – to finish with 12 points. Rhonda Owens came off the bench to add 10 points and grabbed five rebounds.
"We're taking every game as it comes. We want to do the best we can and have a little fun playing our game," said Mercer head coach Brenda Welch-Nichols. "We've gotta communicate better, though. Our weakness has been communicating offensively and defensively. When we communicate, we get things done."
Belmont (12-5, 8-2 A-Sun) enters the game on a four-game winning streak. After defeating cross-town rival Lipscomb, the Bruins rolled over Florida Atlantic on the road and swept Jacksonville and North Florida at home last weekend. Alysha Clark was named A-Sun Player of the Week after her offensive explosion against JU and UNF; the freshman forward averaged 19 points and 12 rebounds. Clark leads the conference in scoring and is 10th in the nation.
"It's going to be a great game. Whoever comes out and has the best shooting night is going to win. Coach Cross is going to have his team prepared after we came back and beat them in Macon," said Nichols. "Rebounding is going to be a big difference in the ballgame, and it's going to be a battle from the beginning."
Tip-off against Belmont is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. at the Curb Event Center. The Bears face the Lipscomb Lady Bisons Saturday at 3 p.m.