Nov. 15, 2009
BALTIMORE - It took just two games for Miriam McKenzie to firmly establish her presence at Loyola. The sophomore guard went on an absolute tear in the second half Sunday, lifting the Greyhounds to a 63-48 win over Army in Sunday's home-opener at Reitz Arena. McKenzie nearly outdid her 23-point performance in Friday's season-opener against La Salle turning in 21 points and 10 rebounds in just her third career start.
The second half proved to be a turning point in what began as a close game. Loyola (2-0) kicked the defense up a notch in the second half, holding Army (1-1) scoreless through two long stretches. The Greyhounds dominated their opponents in the second half after falling behind in the first.
Army ran a balanced attack in the first half, while Loyola relied heavily on Grant and McKenzie, who turned in 10 and 11 points in the first half. The two of them managed to help the Greyhounds to an early lead, but the Knights come back to tie it up at 27-27 late in the first half. Laura Baranek and Erin Anthony then put in two layups for a Black Knight lead.
With Army leading by four and 45 seconds left in the half, Devon Carey swished a three to cut the lead to one. Erica DiClemente then stripped the ball from Erin Jankowski and took it down court for a fastbreak layup, putting the `Hounds ahead again. But Baranek was fouled by Grant, and the Knights got one last free throw in, tying the game seconds before the buzzer.
The balance the Knights saw in the first half shifted to the Greyhounds' side in the second. Loyola took back a lead early holding Army scoreless through the first eight minutes.
Grant sparked an 8-0 run to open the second half, starting the `Hounds off with a shot from the post and following it up with a free throw. Carey netted another three and McKenzie solidified the lead with a layup, putting the score at 40-32.
Anthony finally got a shot in for the Knights but Alyssa Sutherland eliminated any more opportunities with two steals in the next three possessions, taking the second one down for a fastbreak layup, putting the `Hounds up by 12 with 10 minutes left to play, starting off another long scoreless run for the Knights.
Army shot just a little over 27 percent from the field in the second half, down from their first half mark of 46.4 percent, went 0-for-10 in 3-point attempts and knocked down two free throws. Forward Erin Anthony led Army with 14 points and 11 rebounds.
The Greyhounds maintained a 44.4 percent mark from the field and a 66.7 free throw mark.