(LAS VEGAS, Nev.) - Freshman forward Kelli Dixon (Walton, Ky./Walton-Verona) scored a career-high 20 points, but it wasn't enough as 25th-ranked Thomas More College women's basketball team fell, 79-66, to Simpson College today (Friday, December 30, 2011) on the final day of the D3hoops.com Classic at the South Point Casino Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
With the loss the Saints fall to 8-3 and with the win, the Storm improves to 9-3.
Thomas More raced out to an early 9-0 lead when junior guard Allison Long (Hebron, Ky./Conner) made a three-pointer with 17:06 to play in the half. Simpson answered with a 26-8 run capped by an Ali Sokol tip-in to give the Storm a 26-17 lead at the 7:45 mark of the first half. The Saints used a 7-2 run to cut the lead to 28-24 with 5:58 to play in the half when sophomore guard Katie Kitchen (Alexandria, Ky./Campbell County) made two free-throws. The Storm responded with a 6-1 run to increase the lead to 34-25 with 3:16 to play in the opening half when Kate Nielsen made a lay-up. Thomas More came right back with a 5-0 run to cut the lead to 34-30 on a Kitchen tip-in with 1:49 to play in the opening half. Simpson extended the lead to 36-30 at halftime when Nielsen made two free-throws with 35-seconds to play in the first half.
Thomas More opened the second half on a 4-0 run to cut the lead to 36-34 with 18:05 to play in the game when Dixon made a lay-up. Simpson answered with a 19-10 run capped by a Sokol three-pointer to extend the lead to 55-44 with 9:29 to play in the half. The Saints used a 10-4 run cut the lead to 59-54 with 6:55 to play in the game when Long made a three-pointer. That would be as close as the Saints would come as Simpson closed out the game on a 20-12 run for the 79-66 victory.
Joining Dixon in double-figure scoring was Long with 15 points. Sophomore forward Moriah Corey (Louisville, Ky./Butler) led the Saints on the boards with 12 rebounds, while Kitchen added 11. Long led the team in steals with three and Kitchen led the team in assists with four.
Thomas More returns to Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) action on Wednesday (January 4, 2012) as it travels to Greenville, Pennsylvania to play Thiel College at 5:30 p.m.