By THE HERALD-WHIG STAFF
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Felisha Loggins generally shows little emotion on the basketball court.
So when she let out a scream and a fist-pump after her five-point surge in the second half of the Quincy University women's basketball team's 80-65 win at Illinois-Springfield on Thursday, it was a sign of how well the QU junior guard was playing.
"You know our team is on when that happens," QU coach Jeni Garber told ESPN 1440. "It gets everybody fired up. It gets us all with a little bit more confidence."
With Loggins paving the way, the Lady Hawks (14-12, 12-6) overcame a 36-29 halftime deficit and snapped their four-game losing streak. In the process, they secured the No. 4 seed and a first-round bye for the GLVC Tournament. QU is positioned in the tournament's quarterfinals, with its opponent to be determined based off of Sunday's first-round games.
Had the Lady Hawks lost to UIS, they would have slipped all the way to the No. 8 seed.
"This was kind of like the tournament prelim for us," Garber said. "We knew we wanted to get this win bad because we knew what it meant for us in the future, in the conference tournament."
Loggins tallied her sixth double-double of the season with 15 points alongside a game-high 10 rebounds. She had only one point at halftime. QU junior guard Lucy Cramsey also had just one point at halftime before finishing with a game-high 18 points and eight rebounds.
"It was actually kind of funny, because at the beginning of the second half, (Loggins) came up to me when we were shooting and warming up, and she said, ‘Lucy, you and I only have one point, let's go,'" Cramsey said.
Twice during the second half, Loggins scored a putback basket and followed it up on the ensuing possession with a 3-pointer. The second occasion put QU ahead 61-53 with 6 minutes, 58 seconds remaining. It effectively sealed the game and elicited the outpouring of emotion from Loggins.
Kelly Buresh kept QU in the game early. She drained four first-half 3-pointers and scored all 14 of her points in the first half. All five QU starters finished in double figures, as Hannah Weedman tallied 15 points and Maggie Cunningham scored 14.
Megan Bergerud led UIS (6-20, 3-15) with 13 points. QU played a triangle-and-2 defense in the second half, with Cramsey guarding Bergerud and Loggins guarding Alyssa Palmer. Bergerud didn't score after halftime. Of Palmer's 12 points, only five came after halftime, and only two of her seven assists were in the second half.
"I think that (triangle-and-2) helped a lot, because (Loggins) is a little quicker than me, and she did a little bit better job of containing (Palmer)," Cramsey said.