Sophomore forward Kelly Schmidt broke open the game when she
scored from inside the paint after an offensive rebound, then stole
the ball and made a layup to give the Lions a 15-10 lead seven minutes into the first half.
Schmidt, a 2004 second-team All-American, led all scores with 19
points. The 6-foot Schmidt averages 24.8 per game thanks to a
37-point outburst in the season opener and 41 points against La
Sierra Nov. 23.
"I just go out and try to find what the defense is giving me," she
said. "But I will do whatever it takes for the team to win. It really
doesn't matter how many points I score. It's all about the team."
Her selfless attitude is what makes her so special.
"She's one of the top five players in America," said Coach Russ
Davis, who earned his 200th career win with the victory. "She has a
nose for the ball and finds a way to score."
Vanguard, which has won three straight games and hosts Biola at
5:30 p.m. Saturday, turned on the afterburners and jetted away with
20 straight points while the Hawks' offense was held scoreless. Not
until a three-pointer by sophomore guard Katie Foster more than eight
minutes later did Christian Heritage's scoring drought stop.
Foster knocked down four three-pointers to end the half, part of
her game-high five three-pointers, to close within 42-30, but
Vanguard had too much firepower for the visitors.
The Vanguard defense clamped down again, not allowing a Christian
Heritage point until six minutes passed in the second half. By that
time the Lions had raced to 54-31 advantage.
With the Hawks' defense protecting the interior, Vanguard guards
Lisa Faulkner and Lacey Mills knocked down back-to-back threes and
forward Melissa Cook hit a pull-up jumper to give the Lions a 62-36
lead with 11 minutes remaining.
Faulkner had a game-high 13 assists to go with her 17 points. Five
Lions had double-digit scoring nights: Schmidt, Faulkner, Cook (15),
Rachel Beese (13) and Lacey Burns (10).
Despite the fact Vanguard outrebounded the Hawks, 53-39, and won
in convincing fashion, Davis was not pleased.
"I'm not happy with the way we played," the ninth-year coach said.