Women’s Basketball Synopsis
By Allen Martin
The Michigan State University basketball team is 21-3 and racking up wins each and every night! Pause. I know many of you may be confused by that last statement, but this team consists of 15 women who know how to play the game of basketball pretty well. Yes, that team is the MSU women’s basketball squad.
Head coach Suzy Merchant currently has the team ranked first in the Big Ten (13th nationally) and poised to make a run in the post season. However, this road of success has not been an easy one. The lady Spartans have dodged some close games, due in large part to the play of senior forward Kalisha Keane.
There was the clutch victory against Iowa on January 13, in which Keane hit a three-pointer with 0.5 seconds left to give the Spartans a 63-60 edge. Also, a thrilling 73-70 overtime win against Wisconsin, where Keane scored 28 points and pulled down 7 rebounds. Her outstanding play provides the team with confidence each and every time they step onto the court.
Thursday’s matchup against the Penn State Lady Lions propelled the Spartans at the top of the Big Ten Conference. Penn State (20-6, 9-3 in the Big Ten) entered the game ranking first in the conference, but this soon became only a memory. Junior forward Lykendra Johnson was a dominant presence, scoring 24 points and 12 rebounds. The biggest component to this win had a lot to do with defense, as the lady Spartans forced Penn State turnover after turnover. Johnson alone had eight steals and two blocks. They would eventually pull away to a 60-49 victory.
How far can this team really go? Only time will tell as coach Merchant leads them against Michigan on Sunday. So, news flash people: Ladies can ball too, just in case you didn’t know.