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Strong Second-Half Defense Propels Lady Cats

Feb 15, 2020

Lady Bobcat Aleksei Smith playing stellar defense.
#12 -- Aleksei Smith

Lady Bobcat Ashley Forrest for three.
#10 -- Ashley Forrest

College of the Ozarks women’s basketball celebrated Senior Night with a big win over the Lincoln College Lady Lynx, 85-54.  With the win, the Lady Bobcats improved to 24-4 on the season.


During their time with the Lady Bobcats, both senior guards Ashley Forrest (Branson, MO) and Aleksei Smith (Berryville, AR) worked hard to earn their way into the starting lineup and are known for their willingness to do what it takes to win.  The whole team would need to emulate that scrappiness on this evening to defeat a tough Lincoln Lady Lynx team. 


The game began with each team hot from the field.  College of the Ozarks would do a great job early spreading the ball around, racking six first-quarter assists, with eight Lady Bobcat scorers.  Lincoln College would counter with a focused attack by star guard Erynn Young, a six-footer with superior drive and slash skills.  By the end of the first, Young would score 12 points, just nine away from her season average.  However, the Lady Bobcats would hold a 26-23 lead.


In the second quarter, the Lady Bobcats adjusted their defense and successfully frustrated Young.  A big part of that adjustment was Aleksei Smith.  Smith would hold Young to just nine points the rest of the game, which rendered the Lynx offense stagnant.  The Lady Bobcats answered with two separate 6-0 runs to lead at halftime, 43-31.


Midway through the third quarter, an Ashley Forrest block would turn into an Abby Oliver deep three-pointer, sparking a 15-0 run, putting the Lady Bobcats up by 22 points.  Oliver would finish the game with 15 points, 2 assists, 2 rebounds and a steal.  Forrest would finish with a pair of blocks to go along with a share of the rebounding lead at seven.  At the end of three quarters, C of O led 62-40.


College of the Ozarks continued to guard tough in the fourth quarter, holding Lincoln to 8 for 36 (22.2%) from the field in the second half.  For the game, the Lynx shot just 21 for 62 (33.9%) from the field, 10-percent below their season average.  Meanwhile, the Lady Bobcats would push the pace and spread the ball around, tallying 19 assists as a team for the game.  In total, College of the Ozarks would shoot 28 for 69 (40.6%) from the field, including 10 for 23 (43.5%) from downtown, to secure an 85-54 victory.


Notable stat leaders included Grace Steiger, who led C of O with a career-high 17 points.  Aleksei Smith would score 12 points, dish out four assists, and grab three boards.  Harper Little added 11 points and two steals.  Annie Noah finished with nine points and seven rebounds.


For complete stats, please visit:


College of the Ozarks women’s basketball returns to action Tuesday, February 18 against Haskell Indian Nations University in Lawrence, Kansas at 5:30 PM.