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Lady Braves offense finds groove, nets season high in points

Greg Mast
The Ottawa Herald

The Ottawa University women’s team is beginning to find an identity and gel together.

    The squad is under first-year coach Tarniesha Scott, who retooled the team with new players. The Lady Braves’ offense appeared to run smoother than it has all season in Monday’s 86-78 win over McPherson in Wilson Field House. The 86 points was a season high.

Ottawa University junior forward Kanecia Payne shoots a short jumper in the lane Monday against McPherson. Payne was one of five players in double figures.

 “It is a process,” Scott said. “We are still figuring it out day-by-day. We have a lot of new people. I am new to them. Each game, we try and get a little better.

    “Let’s be confident and comfortable in who we are and what we are capable of doing.”

    What the team is capable of doing is taking good shots.

    “We talked about ball reversal, taking team shots,” Scott said. “Letting the ball go inside and out. Play through the post.”

    Ottawa displayed patience in attacking the McPherson press and when to play uptempo.

    “In the first half, we took a few bad transition shots,” Scott said. “We rushed it. If we don’t have layups in transition, it is Ok. Our half court game is pretty good. If you have better shot selection, you are not sprinting back in transition the whole time.”

    Ottawa found its shooting eye from the outside in the second half as it hit 6-of-9 from behind the arc. Ottawa shot 47 percent from the field.

    “This is your gym, if you want to win this game, you have to make shots,” Scott told the players at halftime. “Whenever they do what we have been talking about it is a good sign.”

    A season-best five players scored in double figures,

    “We have a lot of pieces that can do some things. If you can get everyone involved that is when we are tough.”

    Haylie Anderson led Ottawa with 24 points, five assists and five steals. Amyr Lowe fired in a career-high 20 points. Kanecia Payne and Mariah Grizzle added 12 points apiece. Liz Vaughn had 10 points and a career-high 16 rebounds.

    Ottawa (3-6, 3-4) plays 5 p.m. Thursday at home against Tabor College.