The records didn’t lie on Thursday night in Horizon League women’s basketball as all four games saw the team with the better conference record pick up the victory.
With Thursday’s games the beginning of the second half of the conference slate, Green Bay, ranked #10/9 in the polls, was off Thursday but remains at the top with a 9-0 record. Wright State, using a school-record 15 three-pointers to win onThursday night, is in second with an 8-2 record. Detroit is alone in third at 7-3 in League play following its win over Loyola.
Butler picked up its third conference victory in its last four contests with a road triumph over Cleveland State and Youngstown State won its fourth conference game of the season with a win Thursday night at home over Valparaiso.
Butler 68, Cleveland State 62
SophomoreJenna Cobb scored a career-high 21 points and sophomore centerSarah Hamm added 17 and 11 rebounds to lead the Butler women's basketball team to a 68-62 win at Cleveland State Thursday night. The win lifted BU to 5-5 in Horizon League play.
Cobb had her best scoring night on 7-for-12 shooting and 2-for-2 shooting from beyond the arc. Cobb also grabbed seven rebounds, including a key offensive board in the game's final minute that led to a pair of free throws by seniorDevin Brierly. Hamm's double-double was her second in as many games.
Butler, who routed CSU 67-43 earlier this season, clearly played with more energy than the host Vikings. Back-to-back treys by Brierly and Hamm early in the second half gave Butler a 36-28 lead with 18:35 to play. Those long-range shots set up the decisive run in the game. Butler went on a 14-2 run to lead 50-32 with 12:26 left in the game.
Cleveland State (8-13, 3-7) would battle back with a 9-0 run to get within 50-41. Butler answered back with Cobb slashing to the basket for points. CSU played full-court, pressure defense to get back into the game. A free throw by CSU's Shalonda Winton with 4:28 remaining cut BU's lead to 59-51.
Winton led the Vikings with 22 points and 12 rebounds. Honesty King added 11 points.
The first half was even until Butler built a 23-15 lead with 6:48 to play. A couple of Viking 3-pointers prevented the Bulldogs from taking a commanding lead. A trey by McDivitt but BU ahead 30-23 with the first-half clock winding down, but CSU's King made a 3-pointer at the buzzer to make Butler's halftime lead 30-26.
BU did battle foul trouble most of the night, with Hamm, Becca Bornhorst andHannah Douglas all saddled with four fouls with the game still in doubt. Bornhorst fouled out with 3:13 left. CSU was at the line all night and had a big advantage in that area until it had to foul the Bulldogs late.
Butler (9-12, 5-5) will finish its Ohio swing Saturday, Feb. 4 when it plays at Youngstown State. Cleveland State remains at home and hosts Valparaiso on Saturday.
Detroit 83, Loyola 59
The Detroit women's basketball team got off to a fast start and never looked back as the Titans dominated Loyola, 83-59, on Thursday on Dick Vitale Court at Calihan Hall.
The win evened the Titans record to 11-11 on the year and they now stand at 7-3 in the Horizon League, good for third place. The loss drops Loyola to 9-12, 4-6 in league play.
Five players scored in double figures led by senior Jalesa Jones, who tallied 17 points, six rebounds and a game-high seven assists. She was 5-of-12 from the field and a perfect 6-of-6 from the free throw line.
Just like the Titans win in Chicago back in January, both freshman Shareta Brownand junior Yar Shayok posted double-doubles. Brown had 13 points and a game-best 11 boards, while Shayok finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds. It was Shayok's 23rd career double-double and the fifth against Ramblers – in just seven career games.
It was raining threes to start the contest and those came off the hand of sophomore Senee Shearer, who nailed three treys in the game's opening minutes. A steal by sophomoreMegan Hatterthen led to Jones' fast break layup and Detroit took a 13-2 lead just over three minutes into play.
The Ramblers then trimmed the lead briefly to 16-8 at the 15:02 mark before the Titans erupted on another offensive attack outscoring Loyola, 20-4, over the next 7:50 to take a 36-12 lead. Shearer had another 3-pointer in that run and junior Chanahl Putnamadded a pair as well, while Shayok had four points inside.
Detroit maintained its 20-point advantage for the rest of the half, pushing it to as high as 29, 51-22, at the break.
It was not only the Titan offense that was hot – Detroit shot 52.9% in the first half hitting 18-of-34 from the field and 7-of-17 from three – but the defense came out ready to play picking up right where it left off against Cleveland State. UDM held Loyola to just 7-of-31 shooting (22.6%) and outrebounded the Ramblers, 28-12, and that was after holding CSU to 25% from the field in last Saturday's win.
The Titans led by 20 or more for most of the second half. After Loyola cut it to 55-34, the Titans steadily began to push the margin back up, eventually taking its largest lead of the game at 31 points, 71-40, with 9:15 left and then again at 75-44 with 6:52 remaining before a late Ramblers run closed the deficit to within 18, 77-59.
Shearer ended the game with 16 points on four 3-pointers and a 4-of-4 effort from the line, while Putnam had 13 points and three caroms.
UDM shot 43.5% from the field and 87.5% at the charity stripe (21-of-24), and owned the boards, 49-31. The Titans also handed out 18 assists and came away with eight steals.
The game was part of the nationwide Jesuit Basketball Spotlight project, using Jesuit basketball to raise awareness of Jesuit education. The Basketball Spotlight project highlights more than 90 games this season between men's and women's teams from the 28 Jesuit colleges and universities across the United States. Each of the 28 is dedicated to strong academics and teaching women and men to serve others and live a faith that does justice. Jesuit, Catholic colleges and universities in the United States have more than 200,000 students currently and more than 1.7 million living alumni. The Jesuit educational mission began in Europe approximately 500 years ago.
Detroit will look for a weekend sweep at home with UIC visiting Calihan Hall on Saturday. Loyola continues its road trip with a Saturday trip to Wright State.
Wright State 80, UIC 70
The Wright State women's basketball team connected on a school-record 15 three-pointers as the Raiders overcame an 11-point first half deficit to defeat UIC 80-70 Thursday night at WSU's Nutter Center.
Both teams came out hot in the early going as a Kim Demmings jumper gave the Raiders a 9-7 edge just 2:20 into the contest. UIC, however, followed with a 15-2 run over the next six minutes, nine of those coming on three Taylor Foulks three-pointers, to go up 22-11.
The margin was still seven until Wright State tied it at 29 on a Demmings foul shot and back-to-back triples by Kayla Lamotte and Courtney Boyd. Another Lamotte three tied it at 32, one from Demmings evened the score at 35 and a final three by Boyd gave the Raiders a 38-35 halftime edge.
The Raiders shot 52 percent from the field in the first half, including nine of 16 from behind the arc, while the Flames hit for 40 percent overall and were six of 16 from three.
An Emily Kobel three from the left corner drew UIC to within one at 59-58 with 7:41 remaining before WSU took control with 11 unanswered points over the next three minutes, a burst that included threes from Lamotte and Boyd and a three-point play by Breanna Stucke.
The Flames would get no closer than eight the rest of the way as Wright State hit seven of nine foul shots over the final 1:22.
The Raiders shot 48 percent on the night, including 15 of 30 from three-point range, and were 13 of 18 at the line while UIC shot 37 percent and was nine of 30 from three.
The 15 three-pointers eclipse the previous school record of 14, set on November 30 at Buffalo.
Demmings led the way for WSU with 22 points and posted a double-double in adding a season-high 10 assists. Boyd had 16, Lamotte 14 and Shaunda Sandifer 10.
Shamiea Greenpaced all scorers with 26 for UIC (13-8, 6-4) while Kiara Strickland had a double-double of 20 points and 10 boards. Foulks had nine points and 11 rebounds and Jasmine Bailey chipped in nine points and nine rebounds.
Wright State (15-7, 8-2) wraps up the brief two-game homestand Saturday against Loyola starting at 2:00. UIC finishes the weekend by heading north to face Detroit.
Youngstown State 64, Valparaiso 58
Junior Brandi Brown made a key 3-pointer with 1:54 remaining and Kenya Middlebrooks knocked down six clutch free throws in the final 16 seconds and had a steal in the final seconds as the Youngstown State women's basketball team held off Valparaiso 64-58 on Thursday night at the Beeghly Center.
With the win, YSU improves to 10-11 overall and 4-6 in the Horizon League while Valpo falls to 5-16 and 1-9.
The Penguins could never get on track, but credit goes to the Crusaders who played only six players and had two go the distance.
Finally in the final two minutes, YSU was able to pull out a hard-fought win.
With the contest tied at 55, Brown drained her second 3-pointer of the night to break the deadlock with 1:54 left. Middlebrooks made two foul shots with 16.9 seconds left to give the Penguins at 60-55 lead, but Valpo answered when Ashley Varner converted a back-door layup and was fouled with 12.3 ticks on the clock. Varner made the free throw to get the Crusaders within 60-58.
Middlebrooks was fouled again with 11.2 seconds remaining and calmly knocked down two more from the line giving the Guins a four-point cushion.
Following a Valpo time out with 9.7 seconds left, Middlebrooks stole the inbounds pass and was fouled with 4.7 seconds left. Just for good measure she made both attempts giving the Penguins a 64-58 victory.
Brown finished with a game-high 20 points and hauled in 10 rebounds for the double-double. Middlebrooks and Monica Touvelle each finished with 11 points. Touvelle had nine in the second half, knocking down three 3-pointers.
In the second half, YSU made 8-of-19 3-point attempts (42.1 percent) and shot 40.4 percent (23-of-57) for the game. Valpo shot 39.2 percent making 20-of-51 attempts. YSU was 9-of-10 from the free-throw line while the Crusaders were 16-of-18. Tabitha Gerardot had 15 points to lead Valpo.
Neither team could grab control of the contest in the first half. YSU shot 39.1 percent (9-of-23) while the Crusaders were 9-of-28 (32.1 percent).
While the Penguins could not find the mark from behind the arc making just 1-of-12 attempts (8.3 percent). The Guins did have success inside the arc connecting on 8-of-11 shots (72.7 percent) and that is what helped them to a 21-20 halftime advantage. Valpo did not make a 3-pointer and both teams were 2-of-2 from the line.
YSU led by seven on four occasions, the first at 11-4. After the Crusaders' Laura Richards tied the contest at four, the Guins scored the next seven points as Middlebrooks knocked down their lone 3-pointer of the first half, while Touvelle and Kelsea Fickiesen each knocked down buckets.
Leading 17-10 following a Jones layup, Valpo scored six straight to get with 17-16 on a layup by Laura Richards. The Crusaders took their first lead of the contest at the 41 second mark of the opening half when Richards converted a fast-break layup.
YSU was able to take the lead into the locker room when Middlebrooks drained a 12 footer with 16 seconds left in the half.
The Penguins wrap up their four-game homestand with a Saturday afternoon contest against Butler. Valparaiso wraps up its trip to Northeast Ohio with a game at Cleveland State on Saturday.