Free Throws Push JBU Past Columbia

Siloam Springs, Ark. (December 10, 2005) — The 21st-ranked John Brown Golden Eagles connected on 11-of-12 free-throw attempts in the final five minutes to hold off Columbia College (Mo.) 73-66 Saturday in Siloam Springs. Kendra McCormick scored 19 points for the Golden Eagles, and Nancy Pierre posted a double-double with 18 points and 10 rebounds. Ashley Wettengel added 16 points, 9 rebounds, and 6 assists.

John Brown (8-3) struggled to gain an advantage early against Columbia (4-5) but managed to create a 12-point 24-12 lead by the 9:23 mark on a basket by Pierre. Columbia’s Laura Elliott then scored 8 unanswered points to key a comeback that left John Brown leading just 37-34 at halftime.

The second half followed much the same pattern. McCormick put the Golden Eagles up by 12 again, 56-44, with 8:23 left in the game, but their shooting then went cold. Jessica Wilson tied the game 59-59 at the 4:56 mark with Columbia’s first 3-pointer, and soon after, Amanda Koetting gave the Cougars a 62-61 lead on another trey with 4:11 left. The foul situation then began to favor John Brown, however. Wettengel took the lead back for the Golden Eagles with a pair of free throws, and Pierre hit another pair ten seconds later. Lesli Fanning hit a 3-pointer at the 3:02 mark—just John Brown’s second field goal in over five minutes—to make the score 68-63. She, Pierre, and McCormick combined for five more free throws in the final three minutes.

Koetting led Columbia in scoring with 19, while Elliott and Wilson added 15 and 11, respectively.