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The Knox College Prairie Fire and the Monmouth College Fighting Scots men's and women's basketball teams matched up in Galesburg last night. The Monmouth College women broke open a close game early in the second half and defeated the Prairie Fire 97-80 on Wednesday at Memorial Gym. Knox who dropped to (7-13) overall and (5-10) in the Midwest Conference erased a 15 point lead by the Fighting Scots over the final four minutes of the first half.  Monmouth extended a 25-22 lead to 37-22 on a 12-0 run. The Prairie Fire responded with a 17-2 surge, including the last six points on back-to-back 3-pointers by sophomore and Galesburg High School graduate, Jessica Howard, to tie the game at 39-39 with less than 30 seconds before the break.  The Scots snapped the run with a bucket by Tiffany Churchill for a 41-39 halftime lead. Paige Nord scored 11 of her team-high 20 points for Monmouth in the opening half. The Fighting Scots came out hot in the second half.  Monmouth used a 23-6 run over the first six minutes to take a 64-45 lead from which Knox couldn’t recover. A basket by Lauren Kellen with 8:08 to play gave the Scots their biggest lead of the contest at 80-56. The Prairie Fire never got closer than 15 points the rest of the way. The win was the sixth straight for Monmouth, which hasn’t lost to Knox since February of 2002. Joining Nord in double-figure scoring were Kellen with 17 points, ZipporahWilliams with 14 (and 10 rebounds), Kaley Corban with 13, and Marla Willard with 12. Leading Knox in scoring was Katie White with 13 points.  Becky Duffy added 12 and Sara Johnson 11. The Fighting Scots kept pace with league leading Cornell College and improved to (18-3) overall and 13-3 in the Midwest Conference.

 

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