Lake Land women’s basketball coach Dave Johnson earned his 450th career victory Sunday night thanks to a second-half defensive effort that saw the Lakers women hold Kankakee College to just 24 points on the way to a 70-53 win at the Lakers Fieldhouse.
The Lakers held the Cavaliers to just 22% shooting in the second half and forced 27 turnovers overall to improve to 14-1.
Kankakee fell to 11-2.
Lake Land made seven of 18 3-point attempts, while Kankakee hit just three of 12.
“I thought defensively a really solid effort,” Laker coach Dave Johnson said. “Anytime you can hold a Kankakee team to 53 points, it is a really solid team effort. I thought getting out of the gate fast offensively was key for us today.”
Johnson, who averaged 21 wins across 18 previous seasons, is 450-248 overall.
Abby Weis scored 22 points and teammate Carsyn Fearday had 21 points and seven rebounds.
The first half was defined by two runs, one by each team.
The Lakers started out quick, jumping out to an 11-0 start in the first 3:49 of the game. They forced the Cavaliers into an 0-4 start from the field and three turnovers. The lead would stay between seven and 13 in the quarter.
The second quarter saw the Lakers miss their first three field goals as well as two free-throws while Kankakee started to hit their stride going on a 9-0 run to start the second quarter.
A Ceairra Smith field goal with 6:52 to go in the half cut the lead to 19-17. Lake Land responded with a 9-2 run of its own, keyed by two Weis 3-pointers that made it 28-19 with 3:43 left in the half.
The Cavaliers never got closer than four points.
Lake Land outscored the Cavaliers 18-6 from beyond the arc and forced 16 turnovers in the first half to take a five-point lead.
Lake Land used a stingy third quarter defense to slowly expand the lead in the quarter. Weis scored twice to make it 38-29. The lead remained between seven and nine points for the next three minutes before another run, this time 11-2 over four minutes, increased the Lakers’ advantage to 51-35 with 2:40 to go in the quarter. By the end of the third Lake Land led 53-38.
The fourth quarter would see both teams trading scores with the lead wavering between 14 and 19.
Lake Land faces Prairie State College in the finale of the Laker Classic at 2 p.m. on Monday.
In other action Sunday, Prairie State fell to John Wood College, 90-52.