The 12th-ranked Green Bay women’s basketball team jumped on visiting Valparaiso early in cruising to a win Thursday night. The victory improved GB’s record to 14-1 in conference play and guaranteed the Phoenix at least a share of their 14th consecutive Horizon League regular season title.
In other action on Thursday, Detroit and Wright State both won to improve to 11-4 in conference play. The Titans defeated Cleveland State at home, 65-55, while Wright State dispatched Youngstown State, 84-62.
In the final game of the night, Milwaukee improved its chances to host a first round conference tournament game with a 54-52 win over Butler. The victory moved the Panthers into a tie for eighth place in the League. Seventh and eighth place in the final regular season standings host first round games.
Detroit 65, Cleveland State 55
Freshman Shareta Brown tallied her 10th double-double of the year and senior Jalesa Jones broke the school's all-time assist record as Detroit used two big runs to blow past Cleveland State, 65-55, on Thursday night from Calihan Hall.
Brown ended the game with 20 points and a game-high 11 rebounds, while Jones finished with 12 points, seven assists and three rebounds.
Jones broke the record late in the game by feeding Brown inside, who put it in while being fouled. She now has 487 career assists passing Titan Hall-Of-Famer Mary Lillie Cicerone's (1978-82) 486. Her 132 assists on the season also give her another top 10 season record moving into 10th place. She is also fourth on that list with 159 helpers as a sophomore.
She was not the only one to break a record on the night as Brown passed another Titan Hall-Of-Famer Cassandra Pack for the most points in a season by a freshman. Brown now has 460, moving ahead of Pack's 453 she totaled during the 1983-84 campaign.
The win moved UDM to 15-12 on the year and 11-4 in the Horizon League, where the Titans still stand tied for second place but own the tiebreaker over Wright State (18-9, 11-4 HL). Cleveland State fell to 10-17, 5-11 in the HL.
The Titans trailed by one, 8-7, four minutes in when they took control with a 13-2 run over the next 4:27. Shearer had a pair of 3-pointers during that spurt, while Jones and Brown added layups. The last points came off the hands of junior Chanahl Putnam as her trey gave UDM a 20-10 advantage at the 10:47 mark.
The Vikings briefly got within single digits at 20-12, but another 3-pointer by Putnam ignited a 10-2 run as Detroit opened its biggest lead in the first half, 30-14, en route to taking a 34-19 advantage into the locker room.
Cleveland State hit the opening basket in the second half to get within 13, but the Titans just exploded after that with a 17-3 run to take a commanding 51-27 lead. Six Titans scored during that offensive barrage as the Titans were up by 24 with 14:33 left.
Detroit would extend its advantage to as many as 29, 62-33, with 8:13 left, but a late Vikings' 22-3 run in the final eight minutes made the Titan margin only 10.
Senior Lauren Allen tallied 10 points and four assists. Putnam had nine points – on three 3-pointers, while junior Yar Shayok added six points and eight boards.
Detroit dominated the boards outrebounding the Vikings, 42-29, including a 16-8 advantage on the offensive glass. The Titans netted 34 of their 65 points in the paint and held a 17-4 edge on second-chance points. UDM also shot 41.7% from the field and hit 8-of-11 from the free throw line.
Shalonda Winton led the Vikings with a game-high 26 points.
The Titans will look to sweep the last regular-season homestand on Saturday as Detroit hosts Youngstown State. Cleveland State remains on the road facing Wright State on Saturday.
Green Bay 72, Valparaiso 36
The No. 12/12 Green Bay (24-1, 14-1) women’s basketball team never relinquished its fast start, dominating Valparaiso (8-18, 4-11) in a 72-36 win Thursday at the Kress Events Center. With the win, Green Bay clinched at least a share of its 14th consecutive regular season Horizon League championship, the nation’s longest streak.
Junior Lydia Bauer sank three three pointers in the opening nine minutes as Green Bay jumped out to a 19-2 lead, not committing a turnover throughout the run. Bauer finished with a game-high 17 points while senior Julie Wojta posted her 14th double double of the season with 16 points and 10 rebounds.
After Green Bay’s 16-0 run to start the contest, Valpo’s Laura Richards put the Crusaders on the board with a jumper at the 11:18 mark. After Bauer’s third three, Richards answered with a three of her own to cut Green Bay’s lead to 19-5 with 9:50 to play in the opening half.
The Phoenix defense held the Crusaders scoreless for the next three-and-a-half minutes and allowed just six points on three field goals in the final 6:14 of the first half of play.
Stephanie Sension boosted Green Bay’s lead to 20 (27-7) when Adrian Ritchie found her down low for the layup. Wojta and Bauer followed suit, each scoring a layup to make it 31-7 with 3:09 remaining.
The Crusaders converted two Green Bay turnovers in the final 43 seconds, including a bucket with one second to play, making it 31-11 at the break.
The Phoenix shot 43 percent in the first half, going 13-for-30 from the field, with all three of Green Bay’s three pointers in the half coming from Bauer who led the scoring with 13 points.
Green Bay built a 35-11 lead in the early minutes of the second half following Megan Lukan’s lone bucket of the contest at the 18:05 mark. Valpo came as close as 19 (38-19) following a three pointer from Ashley Varner with 14:45 to play in the game.
The Phoenix then opened up a 15-0 run, featuring another three from Bauer and six points from Wojta, boosting its lead to 53-19 with 9:42 to play while holding the Crusaders scoreless for seven minutes of play.
Green Bay led by as many as 43 with 3:30 to play as its defense held the Crusaders to 36 points, tying a season low, while scoring 40 points off Valpo’s 29 turnovers. The Phoenix improved on working the ball inside as it finished with 40 points in the paint.
Sension led all players coming off the bench with 12 points, going 5-for-8 from the field in 16 minutes of play.
Green Bay finished the game with a season-low 12 fouls, sending Valpo to the charity stripe just six times. The Crusaders two made free throws and zero blocks, tied Kress Center records for opponent lows.
The Phoenix finished the game shooting 44 percent (26-of-58) from the field and 84 percent from the charity stripe, sinking 16-of-19 attempts.
Green Bay plays its last regular season home game on Saturday hosting Butler. Valparaiso remains in the state of Wisconsin for its next game, playing at Milwaukee on Saturday.
Milwaukee 54, Butler 52
Junior Sami Tucker recorded a game-high double-double of 23 points and 14 rebounds to lead the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee women's basketball team to a 54-52 victory over Butler University Thursday night at the Klotsche Center.
In a game that featured eight ties and 12 lead changes, Tucker's layup and free throw with 7:25 remaining broke a 41-41 deadlock and ignited a 10-1 run that gave the Panthers (8-18, 4-11 Horizon league) control of the game.
The Bulldogs (12-14, 8-7) battled back and cut the lead to one with 1:10 to go at 53-52, but sophomore Courtney Lindfors made one of two free throws with just 1.3 seconds remaining after the UWM defense forced a pair of Butler misses. BU rebounded the second attempt but was unable to get off a shot before time expired.
Freshman Ashley Green added 15 points for UWM, which limited the Bulldogs to 31.7 percent (19-for-60) shooting in the game. Lindfors finished with five points, but did have 10 rebounds and five blocks. Sophomore Angela Rodriguez chipped in with nine points and three assists.
Jenna Cobb and Hannah Douglas both had 11 points to lead Butler.
Tucker's point total matched a career-high, while her rebound total was a collegiate-best and also featured the 500th rebound of her career, marking the 22nd player to reach that total in school history.
The closely-contested game went back and forth all night, especially in the second half. Butler tied the contest at 27-27 on the first basket after intermission and neither team led by more than three points over the course of the next 13 minutes of game time.
Tucker put Milwaukee up, 41-39, on a layup at the 8:27 mark, only to see Mandy McDivitt tie it on the ensuing possession.
Tucker launched a three from the top on the next UWM possession, followed it up with her own rebound and made a layup and got fouled. Her free throw made it 44-41 and was the start of a 10-1 spurt that helped UWM control the game, eventually leading 51-42 with 5:46 to play.
The Bulldogs would not go quietly. Following a three by McDivitt,Cobb nailed a three-ball of her own and then added a jumper that made it 53-52.
Following a turnover, the UWM defense forced a Cobb miss. Lindfors missed a layup with 17 seconds left, with Green grabbing the rebound before falling to the ground. Sarah Hamm forced a tie-up, giving Butler one more chance at the win on the possession arrow.
The defense was up to the task again, forcing a tough shot as time was winding down. Lindfors grabbed the rebound and made one of two, and that was all the Panthers needed to move from 10th to eighth in the league standings.
The team is currently tied with Valparaiso at 4-11 in league play, but has already beaten the Crusaders once this year and will host them on Saturday. Butler looks to rebound on Saturday when it plays at Green Bay.
Wright State 84, Youngstown State 62
Behind a career-high 24 points from Courtney Boyd and two other Raiders scoring 20 or more points, the Wright State women's basketball team pulled away in the second half for a 84-62 win over Youngstown State Thursday night at WSU's Nutter Center.
The first half was back and forth the entire way with nine ties and 14 lead changes. The Penguins used a 7-0 run to go up 30-25 with 5:34 left in the period, only to see the Raiders tie it on a Boyd three and a Shaunda Sandifer layup. WSU then took a 41-39 lead into the halftime break following two Kim Demmings foul shots with 1.4 seconds remaining.
Youngstown State shot 43 percent in the first half, including seven of 12 from behind the arc, while Wright State was at 44 percent, four of 10 from three-point range.
The Raiders tallied the first eight points of the second half and a later 10-0 run, the final six coming on back-to-back Boyd triples, made it 62-48 with 12:20 to play. The Penguins closed to within nine at 66-57 on a Brandi Brown foul shot at the 7:27 mark before WSU put the game out of reach with a 13-0 burst over the next five minutes, six by Molly Fox and five from Sandifer.
The Raiders shot 47 percent in the second half to end up at 46 percent overall, including nine of 22 from three-point range, while YSU hit for just 27 percent the final 20 minutes to finish at 34 percent on the night.
Boyd led all scorers with a career-high 24 points, eclipsing the 19 she had scored on three previous occasions, most recently against Southeast Missouri on December 19. She hit six three-pointers on the night, also a career-best, and tied a season-high with eight rebounds.
Two other Raiders added 20 or more points as Demmings had 22 in recording a double-double with 10 rebounds and also dished out seven assists while Fox chipped in 20. Sandifer also posted a double-double of 13 points and 14 boards.
Brown paced Youngstown State (10-17, 4-12) with 18 points while Heidi Schlegel had 14 off the bench.
Wright State (18-9, 11-4) hosts Cleveland State Saturday at 2:00 in the regular-season home finale. Youngstown State plays at Detroit on Saturday.
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