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Eastern Kentucky WBB Game Preview

Eastern Kentucky WBB Game Preview


RICHMOND, Ky. – The Belmont women's basketball team flexed its cumulative muscle last week in a sign that the Bruins are beginning to play their best ball of the season. They'll put that momentum to the test on the road this week with trips to Eastern Kentucky and Morehead State.

First up is a visit to EKU on Thursday against a Colonels team that hung tough when these two sides met in Nashville at the beginning of Ohio Valley Conference play in early January. Thursday's game tips off at 4 p.m. (CT) and can be streamed on ESPN+ or with the Watch ESPN app. An audio stream is available through the Bruin Sports Network.

Belmont (16-5, 9-1 OVC) topped EKU 69-43 on Jan. 12 thanks to a 36-14 second-half advantage. The Bruins' offense has come alive since then, topping 80 points four times in the past six games. That includes 91- and 100-point outbursts in back-to-back games last week.

Strong play off the bench has been crucial to that success. Belmont has had five players reach double figures scoring in each of the past two games.

"That helps a lot having mulitple players being able to score," said Jamilyn Kinney (Van Buren, Ark.), the reigning OVC Freshman of the Week. "Sometimes Darby (Maggard) is being face-guarded and we have to have other people step up. She'll still step up, but it makes things easier on her and the team just having multiple people on the floor be able to score and put the ball in the hole."

For as well as the offense has been playing, Belmont's emphasis is always on the other end of the floor. The Bruins rank second in the OVC in points allowed (58.7 per game).

"Right now we're just focusing on defense, defense, defense – getting stops is our main priority," Kinney said. "Coach Bart (Brooks) always talks at practice about bringing the energy, focus and effort and things will take care of themselves."

It has recently. Belmont has won eight straight games to ascend to first place in the OVC.