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Kirk Matches Career High As Eagles Top Lebanon Valley

(Posted January 25, 2006)

Kristen Kirk matched her career-best with 29 points to lead the Eagles to a conference win over Lebanon Valley.

Juniata 85, Lebanon Valley 76

HUNTINGDON, Pa. ? Kristen Kirk (Newport/Newport) matched her career-high with 29 points including several clutch baskets down the stretch that helped the Juniata College women?s basketball team hold off visiting Lebanon Valley College 85-76 in Commonwealth Conference action in Memorial Gym Wednesday night.

Kirk was 11-of-17 from the field and 7-of-8 from the foul line as she led four Eagles in doubles figures. The senior guard also grabbed a career-best nine rebounds to help Juniata improve to 9-9 overall and 2-5 in conference play. The Flying Dutchmen dropped to 5-11 on the year and 1-6 in conference action.

Juniata trailed only once in the game which came with the score 2-0, and led by as many as 15 in the second half, before Lebanon Valley used a late run to pull within five points. But the Eagles responded with a Jill Walsh (Ferndale/Johnstown) jumper and then made eight-straight free throws down the stretch to seal the win.

The Eagles controlled the game most of the way as a 10-1 run in the latter stages of the first half helped the home team build a comfortable 11-point edge. The lead grew to 15 on a Kelly Ashcraft (State College/Bellefonte) hoop in the final minute of the first half, and the Eagles would eventually take a 13-point cushion into the locker room.

The lead remained in double digits for most of the second half, and reached 15 points on three separate occasions. The Flying Dutchmen eventually worked the lead into single digits, pulling within six on a Donna Geiger basket with four minutes left. From there it was all Kirk and Walsh as the duo combined to score the team?s final 14 points to close out the game.

Ali Meckey (Bishop Carroll/Ebensburg) added 18 points for the Eagles, with Jess Winemiller (Dallastown/York) adding 16. Walsh was also in double figures with 11.

Megan Bish led all players with 30 points for Lebanon Valley.

Juniata travels to play Conference foe Moravian on Saturday.

LEBANON VALLEY (76): Bish 10 9-9 30, Geiger 5 0-0 10, Bickert 2 4-4 8, Johnson 7 1-2 15, Butler 2 0-0 5, Kueny 1 0-2 2, Gambino 3 0-1 6. Totals ? 30 14-18 76

JUNIATA (85): Meckey 7 0-0 18, Walsh 2 6-7 11, Kirk 11 7-8 29, Winemiller 7 0-0 16, O?Brien 0 0-0 0, Callas 0 0-0 0, Werner 2 0-0 5, Ashcraft 2 0-0 4, Snoby 1 0-0 2. Totals ? 32 13-15 85

Halftime: Juniata 44-31. 3-point goals: Lebanon Valley 2 (Bish, Butler); Juniata 8 (Meckey 4, Winemiller 2, Walsh, Werner). Assists: Lebanon Valley 19 (Geiger 6); Juniata 24 (Meckey 5). Rebounds: Lebanon Valley 40 (Bish, Johnson 14); Juniata 29 (Kirk 9).

Records: Lebanon Valley (5-11, 1-6 Commonwealth), Juniata (9-9, 2-5).

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.