January 5, 2013
San Antonio – Considering how well the Lady Rattlers have been playing all season and this week in particular, it’s not too soon to think about the possible home-court advantage they are trying to possess in the Heartland Conference Tournament.
St. Mary’s continues its reign as the best team in the league in terms of overall and conference records, as it picked up its third straight conference victory in a 82-61 win over Oklahoma Panhandle State Saturday.
It was their fifth blowout of the season.
The Rattlers (10-3, 3-0 in conference) powered through the Aggies (3-10, 0-2 in conference) for the 21-point triumph in a roundhouse effort that got every player off the bench with nearly every Rattler scoring.
Felicia Jacobs (Sr., San Antonio) led in scoring with 13 points to go along with eight rebounds followed by Morgan Pullins (So., Franklin, Mich.) with 10 points. Liz Boyd (Sr., San Antonio), Jackie Woods (Jr., San Antonio) and Kyra Littlejohn (So., Southfield, Mich.) all added nine points apiece while Bria Bell (Jr., Mesquite, Texas) led in boards with nine rebounds and added eight points.
“No one’s role has really changed,” Bell said of the Lady Rattlers’ deep bench. “Everybody is in sync. It’s just St. Mary’s, but a newer version.”
Shining on defense, the Rattlers outhustled the Aggies to pick up 14 steals, led by Dezirae Elizas (Fr., Chandler, Ariz.) with four, and outrebounded the night 44-32.
Saturday was another game that’s becoming typical for the Rattlers. Once it gets going, there’s no turning back as St. Mary’s quickly gained a lead on Oklahoma Panhandle to end with a 23-point lead at the half, 47-24. As half of their 10 wins this season have been blowouts, the Rattlers knew how to keep the pace in the second half to win it by 21.
Currently, the Rattlers have the best overall record in the conference with their biggest threat likely being rival St. Edward’s with its 8-5 record and similar undefeated conference record of 2-0. The Rattlers and the Hilltoppers will face off soon enough as the pair will play each other in St. Mary’s next home game after a two-game road trip.
The Rattlers will play their first league game on the road as they face the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith Thursday in Fort Smith, Ark. at 5:30 p.m.