This archived article was written by: Nate Davis
The College of Eastern Utah’s Lady Eagles split four games over the last two weeks, dropping two games to North Idaho College Cardinals on the road. The Eagles bounced back by winning two huge games against rival Snow College Badgers at home.
On Feb. 13, the ladies headed north for Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, to face off against the 22-6 Cardinals. NIC is the second-ranked team in the Scenic West Athletic Conference, and is the only team to beat College of Southern Idaho.
Coach Dave Paur wanted to try a new tactic against NIC and abandoned the full-court press defense that CEU normally uses. The change did not pay off for the lady Eagles. NIC dominated the court for much of the game, winning 89-66.
Despite the loss, Livnat Alon shined on the court, racking up 25 points, including going 3-3 from behind the arc. Kaylie Robison also contributed 16 points and six rebounds.
After the game, Paur made the decision to return to the full-court press saying, “This is our style, let’s do it.” On Saturday, the Eagles pressed North Idaho, playing with more intensity. Paur said that, “We almost won; we were a lot more competitive.” CEU pulled within five during the second half, but unable to overcome the always-tough Cardinals, falling 77-66.
CEU was led in scoring by Amber Strong who had 16 points; Robison had 12 points and eight rebounds in the loss.
The Eagles came back to Price looking to pull out two wins against rival Snow College last weekend. Both teams came out of the locker rooms fired up and ready to go. The opening four minutes of the game were fast paced, with CEU and Snow trading baskets. Paur said after the game, “That’s as good as I’ve ever had a team play.” In the first half CEU shot an impressive 63 percent from the floor. At half time, Robison, CEU’s double/double queen, had 18 points and eight rebounds; ending the game with 26 points, 13 rebounds and two blocks.
At the half the ladies had a 60-45 lead. When the teams came out after the half, the ladies continued their exciting play, taking Snow out behind the woodshed. CEU was clearly the better team in the win over the Badgers. At one point Snow was on a fast break and went for a lay up, only to be humiliated by a monster block by Robison.
CEU finished the game with four players in double digits; Robison with 26, Strong 16, Savana Gines and Alon, both had 10 points. Alon played a great game, in addition to her 10 points, she had eight assists. She came out on fire, showing a lot of energy and enthusiasm, leading her team to a 106-78 victory.
On Saturday, the Eagles came out looking to rack up another win against the Badgers. They came out a little slow in the first half going 9-30 from the field. CEU looked a bit lethargic and by half time, were staring at the wrong end of a 31-24 score. Snow played well in the second half and, with nine minutes left in the game, the lady Eagles were down 10.
Paur said the women weren’t using the fast-paced style they practice, so he called a time out and told them that they needed to “move the ball faster.” The team adjusted, and started creating scoring opportunities. CEU won the game 70-63, sending Snow College home with a bitter taste in their mouth.
The lady Eagles were led in scoring by Ande Miller who had 15 points. Miller shot well and drained three three-pointers. Robison once again broke double digits with 10 points. Alon also turned in a strong overall performance for CEU with nine points, four rebounds and five assists.
CEU is now looking forward to the last two games of the year. If CEU wins both games they could finish the season in third place in the SWAC. This weekend they will face Salt Lake Community College at the Bunnell-Dimitrich Athletic Center. The games will be played on Friday, Feb. 27, at 5:30 p.m. and on Saturday, Feb. 28, at 3 p.m.