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Lady Bisons return to the court after two weeks off

Friday, December 13, 2013
by Kirk Downs

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Lipscomb women's basketball team finally returns to action Saturday after having not played since Nov. 30. The Lady Bisons travel to neighboring Alabama to square off with Jacksonville State at 7 p.m. at the Pete Mathews Coliseum.

The meeting with JSU will be the fourth matchup in the series history. Lipscomb holds a 2-1 edge over the Gamecocks, winning 67-54 in Nashville in last season. The last time Lipscomb visited Jacksonville, Ala., the Lady Bisons were defeated 81-72 in 2011.

Saturday’s game begins a seven-game road trip for Lipscomb, one that will not see a return to Allen Arena until January 9th.

Lipscomb (1-5) is coming off a tough 86-79 loss to Murray State at Allen Arena, a game where the Purple and Gold overcame a double-digit deficit only to fall short in the waning minutes. The good news is the Lady Bisons only win of the season came on the road, an 81-78 victory at Tennessee State and look to push that streak to two.

Jacksonville State will be Lipscomb’s fifth Ohio Valley Conference opponent of the season, having already dropped games to MSU, Morehead State and Belmont.

The Lady Bisons have been led all season by redshirt sophomore and Chattanooga transfer Ashley Southern. She has recorded five double-doubles in six games, only coming up short on the road at No.7 Kentucky. Southern is the fourth leading scorer in the Atlantic Sun at 15.8 points per game. Southern has snagged at least 12 boards in all but one game this season and is the fourth best rebounder in the nation at 13.8 per game.

After sitting out the first two games, Chandler Cooper has scored double-digits in the last four contests and is the second-leading scorer on the team at 13.5 per game.

Sara Bliss upped her scoring average after dropping 20 and 22 against OVC foes Tennessee State and Murray State. Bliss became the first Lady Bison to reach the 20-point barrier in consecutive games since Jenna Bartsokas did so February of 2010.

Freshman point guard Maya Dillard is the second leading rebounder on the team, pulling down 5.2 per game. Dillard also adds 6.5 points per game behind a .412 field goal percentage.

The Lady Gamecocks are led by junior Candace Morton’s 17.8 scoring average. She has reached double figures in nine-straight games and also leads the team in rebounding at 8.1 boards per game.

Destany McLin and Miranda Cantrell pour in 10.5 and 10.3, respectively and are the only other Gamecocks to average double figures.

After Saturday’s matchup, Lipscomb travels east to Athens, Ga. to battle the 16th ranked and undefeated Georgia Lady Bulldogs on Tuesday at 6 p.m.