On Thursday evening, the Alma College women's basketball team hit the hardwood and hosted MIAA rival Trine University at Art Smith Arena. Trine built a big first half lead and then held off the Scots in the final 20 minutes to earn a 79-70 victory.
The Scots finished the contest with a record of 0-21 on the season and 0-12 in the MIAA, while the Thunder concluded the night with a mark of 5-15 in 2013-14 and 2-9 in the league.
Alma scored the first points of the game when Jr. G Mallory Pruett (Ishpeming/Ishpeming) hit two free throws 1:41 into the contest. However, Trine scored the next eight to take an 8-2 lead at the 15:49 mark and the visitors would not relenquish their advantage for the remainder of the frame.
The Thunder led 23-12 with 8:31 left in the half before the Scots reeled off 10 points in row, culminated by a lay-up by Fr. F Erica Hansen (Mt. Pleasant/Sacred Heart) to make it 23-22 at the 5:42 mark.
Trine responded with the next six points and eventually built their lead to 14 at 41-27 with 2:15 remaining in the half. Ultimately, the Thunder increased the advantage to 18 points and took the 49-31 lead into the halftime break.
A big difference in the first half was the fact that Trine hit four three pointers (six attempts) while the Scots missed all six attempts from beyond the arc. Alma was also hurt by 16 turnovers in the first 20 minutes which accounted for 12 Trine steals.
The Scots came out of the gate strong in the second half and scored the first five points, cutting the deficit to 49-36 on a lay-up by Hansen at the 17:27 mark. In what would prove to the norm in a see-saw second half, Trine extended the lead back to 16 before Alma cut it to 12 after a lay-up by Fr. G Tara Padgett (Freeland/Freeland) with 14:26 left in the game.
The visitors were just not going to let Alma get any closer and actually increased their advantage to 74-57 with just 4:21 remaining in the game. The Thunder still led by 15, 77-62, with just 53 ticks of the clock left, but the never say quit Scots made it interesting until the end.
Alma outscored Trine 8-2 in those final seconds, but a lay-up by So. G Kassidi Adams (Montrose/Montrose) with 0:13 on the clock was the final bucket the Scots would score in the 79-70 defeat.
Fr. Kaitlyn Kendall (Farmington Hills/North Farmington) led the team with career-highs in points (19) and rebounds (eight), while Hansen finished next with 18 points. Alma shot 36% from the field (29 of 80) and just two of 23 (9%) from beyond the arc, while Trine was good on 44% of their attempts (28 of 64) and made six of 11 three-pointers.
The Scots won the battle of the boards by a 54-39 margin but also had 24 turnovers to Trine's 22 on the evening.
Alma concluded the home portion of the 2013-14 season on Saturday afternoon when they host Calvin College at Art Smith Arena. Tip-off for the annual Pink Day is scheduled for 3:00 p.m.