MC women dismiss Methodist, set up clash of USAC unbeatens
By Leonard Butts | (email@example.com)
Maryville College senior Tayler Smith posted a double-double of 17 points and 10 rebounds for the Scots women’s team Sunday on the way to a 70-45 demolition of Methodist, but Smith will be the first to tell you her contribution was only the most obvious.
“We’re a veteran team. We have multiple guards who can shoot it from outside and then drive it, so teams don’t know how to play us. We don’t have one person who dominates every game,” Smith said.
“I think it makes it really difficult for teams to pick someone to close out on. We’ve all been together for quite a while and it helps build that chemistry you see.”
Unbeaten in conference play and with only one loss on the season, the Scots (12-1, 6-0 USAC) appear to have gathered sizeable momentum for the coming clash on Wednesday with undefeated Ferrum.
And Scots coach Darrin Travillian is more than happy for the challenge.
“Yeah, they’re the defending champ, and in a new conference, you kind of want to measure yourself,” he said “They’re a really good team and I think we’re OK, too.”
More than OK if the take down of Methodist is any indication of the kind of success the Scots could continue to have this season. Nine players added to Smith’s scoring, including Janell Menard with 13 points, and MC outrebounded the Monarchs (8-5, 3-3) by 10, including 24 boards on the defensive end. Leilah Farmer recorded five assists and Menard four.
The outcome was more or less determined early when six different Scots combined to knock down 8-of-13 3-pointers in the first half. With Smith’s 13 in the paint, Maryville College led by 22 points as the Monarchs retreated to the locker room to ponder their fate.
“We win because we have a lot of different people who step up,” Travillian said. “We go after it pretty hard every day in practice, so when their number is called, they’re ready.
“They share the ball unbelievably well. It’s really nice. Tayler puts up numbers. She shoots it so well, you want her to shoot it more, but she’s an unselfish player like the rest.”
Methodist matched MC’s two players in double figures in the contest, getting 14 points from guard Iesha Hayes and 13 inside from Chandler Christensen, but depth was an issue and the Scots’ defensive effort kept the Monarchs at 37 percent shooting from the field while Maryville College shot 50 percent.
The second half also saw Travillian get a chance to give his younger players some minutes, building on the depth of experience that the Scots have already established.