Clarksville, Ark.-U of O Lady Eagles head basketball coach Jack Jones won his 350th career game at Ozarks after his team defeated Howard Payne University 65-53 on Saturday.
Jones, who is in his 24th season as head coach, currently ranks 16th in wins among all active NCAA III women’s basketball coaches. Jones has compiled a 350-259 career record at Ozarks. "It’s probably today’s win more than the 350 that I am more thrilled about. When I think about the 350th career win, that kind of ages me," said Jones. "I want to give all the credit to the girls. It is not necessarily me coaching. I drive the bus and put the ball out on the floor and try to give them a few directions. It is the basketball players, and we have traditionally had some strong basketball teams here." It would look to be a difficult day for Jones to earn the milestone as the Lady Eagles trailed 14-3 after just four minutes of play. However, the Lady Eagles (4-6, 0-0) slowly found ways to score including three straight inside baskets by Mandi Carter to pull Ozarks within six points midway through the first half. Ozarks would trail 28-26 at halftime, but a Jennifer Goodwin three-pointer only eight seconds into the second half proved to be a decisive turning point for the Lady Eagles fortunes. The Lady Eagles held the lead for the entirety of the game and would increase their lead to as much as 16 points after Jenna Corbell nailed a three-pointer at the 5:01 mark of the second half. Corbell’s basket finished a 15-2 run to put away a Lady Yellow Jackets team that came into the game with an 8-1 record. The Lady Eagles also received an offensive spark from junior guard Rachael Marble. Marble nailed a key three-pointer at the 7:27 mark of the second half and would score seven the next nine points for the Lady Eagles. Corbell finished the game with 18 points, her tenth consecutive game scoring in double figures. Corbell also had 8 rebounds and 6 assists. Carter paced Ozarks with 11 rebounds and scored 13 points. Marble finished with 11 points on 5 of 8 shooting from the field. The Lady Eagles travel to Texas to begin a five-game road trip starting with match-up with Schreiner University on January 9.