Notebook: Belmont moves back into 1st place

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Notebook: Belmont moves back into 1st place

Abby Wahl jumps to try and block a shot from a Morehead State player during Eastern’s 67-57 loss in Lantz Arena Saturday.

Abby Wahl jumps to try and block a shot from a Morehead State player during Eastern’s 67-57 loss in Lantz Arena Saturday.

Dillan Schorfhiede

Abby Wahl jumps to try and block a shot from a Morehead State player during Eastern’s 67-57 loss in Lantz Arena Saturday.

Dillan Schorfhiede

Dillan Schorfhiede

Abby Wahl jumps to try and block a shot from a Morehead State player during Eastern’s 67-57 loss in Lantz Arena Saturday.

JJ Bullock, Sports Editor

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If anyone had forgotten just how good Belmont’s women’s basketball team was, it reminded everyone of it this weekend.

Belmont has spent most of the season tied with Tennessee Tech atop the conference, each with one loss, but Tennessee Tech lost to Austin Peay 72-65 on Thursday, and Belmont responded to being alone in first place by destroying Tennessee-Martin 100-86 on Saturday.

Ellie Harmeyer scored 30 points on 12-of-15 shooting for the Bruins, and Darby Maggard added 24 points on 6-of-12 shooting.

Belmont did not just beat up on any OVC team; Tennessee-Martin came into the game 7-2, fresh off a win over Tennessee State on Thursday, and Belmont made them look foolish.

The win now has Belmont at 9-1 in conference play and in sole possession of first place. But the win should be a reminder to the entire conference that Belmont is still the same team that rattled off 47 conference wins in a row.

The Tennessee Tech loss to Austin Peay will be an interesting one to keep a reminder set on as the season continues. The Golden Eagles shot just 35 percent in the game and just 30 percent from three-point range. Jordan Brock and Akia Harris both struggled in the game; Brock was 3-of-10 from the field and Harris was 3-of-13.

Every team, including Tennessee Tech, is entitled to struggle during a season, but the way the Golden Eagles have lost this season is troubling. When Tennessee Tech has lost this season, its shooting goes completely out the window. Tennessee Tech shot just 29 percent in its first loss to Morehead State.

Tennessee Tech can play well for the rest of the season, but come conference tournament time its shooting disappears again, and Tennessee Tech could get beat by anyone.

Tennessee Tech should be especially concerned knowing that Morehead State is now tied with them. The Eagles beat Tennessee Tech this season and won twice this weekend against Southern Illinois Edwardsville and Eastern. Morehead State and Tennessee Tech are now tied in second place with 8-2 records.

Parity was on display all across the league. Tennessee State improved to 3-7 after beating Southeast Missouri, knocking them down to a 5-5 conference record. Murray State toppled Jacksonville State on Thursday and then Jacksonville State turned right back around and beat Austin Peay on Thursday.

It is starting to become clear that from top to bottom, the teams in the OVC are going to beat up on each other until the tournament comes to really sort things out.

Two huge matchups loom in the coming week in the conference as Belmont and Morehead State will meet on Saturday, and Tennessee Tech will play Tennessee-Martin as the conference’s top four teams will all play each other on Saturday.

JJ Bullock can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]