Sun, Feb. 26, 2012 - [Women's Basketball]
After a tough week picking up two losses to Georgetown College and Shawnee State University, the University of the Cumberlands (UC) Women's basketball team bounced back nicely with two strong victories over St. Catharine and Campbellsville University, capturing the MSC Regular Season title. Finishing the season off with an impressive 25-3 overall record and a 14-2 conference record, the Patriot ladies can cross one goal off their list this season.
"It means a lot for us to win the first conference championship of the season," Head Coach Melissa Irvin said. "However, our team's goals are much higher and we will not be satisfied until we accomplish everything that we have set out for, and ultimately a National Championship."
On Thursday night, the Patriots looked to regain focus as took their home floor against the St. Catharine Patriots. With exciting passes and a balanced score attack, the Patriots steamrolled past the visiting Patriots 83-60. Shooting a solid 46% from the field as a team, the Patriots had 5 players reach double digits on the night. Senior point guard Jade Howard (Salyersville, KY) led all scorers with 23 points while dishing out 5 assists and shooting 3 for 4 from the three-point line. Senior Lauren Wombles (London, KY) had another double-double on the year as she posted 14 points and 10 rebounds, while junior Stephanie Salyers (Somerset, KY) came off the bench shooting an impressive 5 for 7 from the field, scoring 13 points. Haley Ratliff (Pikeville, KY) and Jessica Upchurch (Stanford, KY) each had 10 points of their own.
On Saturday, the Patriots continued to fight for the regular season champion title, while sending off their four seniors Jade Howard, Amanda Brimm (Williamsburg, KY), Haley Ratliff, and Lauren Wombles in the right way. A more perfect afternoon would have been impossible for the Patriot ladies as they thumped the Campbellsville Tigers easily 79-60.
Not only did this win bring the Patriots one more team acknowledgment, but it was a milestone moment for senior Lauren Wombles. Scoring her 2,007thpoint on the afternoon, Wombles became only the second player in Cumberland history to score over 2,000 points in her career. She trails Soni Smith as the all-time leading scorer and needs only 8 points to tie the record, 9 to rewrite history.
"I never expected this four years ago or even last year, especially since my injury happened at this exact time," Wombles said. "It is a great accomplishment and I can't thank my God, coaches, and teammates enough because without them, none of this would have been possible. However, I am not satisfied and won't be, until the final buzzer sounds March 20th."
Wombles posted her second double-double on the week scoring 26 points and grabbing 10 rebounds, while junior forward Vernisha Moss (Nassau, Bahamas) and senior guard Haley Ratliff chipped in 14 points apiece. Senior Jade Howard did a nice job controlling the Patriots offense once again adding 10 points of her own while handing out 5 assists.
The Patriots move one step closer to their goal of "Working for Tuesday", as they will travel to Frankfort, Kentucky next week for the Mid-South Conference Tournament. The Patriots will hold the #1 seed in the tournament and begin play on Thursday in the first round game against either Pikeville or UVA-Wise at 2:00 pm.
For more information on the Patriot women's basketball team along with other Patriot athletics, please visit www.cumberlandspatriots.com.
Article Provided by Stephanie Quattrociocchi, UC Multimedia & Athletic Services Graduate Assistant