The Case Western Reserve University women’s basketball team traveled to Waltham, Massachusetts to play Brandeis University and then to New York City to play the New York University Violets (NYU). The Brandeis Judges found the Spartans guilty on the court, winning 63-42, and the Violets played with flying colors, grabbing a 72-30 victory. Against Brandeis, third-year forward Hillary Hellman moved past fourth-year forward Kara Hageman in career points to 11th place in school history.
In Massachusetts, the Spartans started the game with a setback of six points, but 3-pointers from Hellmann, second-year guard Alexis Amburgery and first-year forward Megan Shanosky took back the lead, 14-12, by the end of the first. Hellmann started the second quarter with a three, but the Judges took back the lead with a 7-2 run. Good defense from the Spartans transitioned into fastbreak points; a 7-0 run by the Spartans tied the score at 28 heading into halftime.
In the second half, Brandeis started the third quarter with a 13-0 run. Two consecutive threes from first-year guard Jasmine Floyd were not enough to trim the lead, as the Judges went on a 12-0 run in the beginning of the fourth to ice the game. Although the Spartans had a poor field goal percentage (25 percent), the team overall was able to put up 60 shots, which shows the Spartans’ aggressive attack on offense. Hellmann finished the game with 15 points and five rebounds, and Floyd had a career high of 14 points, going a perfect 6-for-6 from the field.
“In the second half, we just lost our composure,” said first-year forward Rebecca Rowlands. “[From the game, we learned to] look for each other and work our best for one another.”
In New York, the Spartans were not able to penetrate the Violets’ tough defense, which led to plenty of turnovers. NYU was able to attempt 48 shots in the first half, as compared to the Spartans’ 20 shots. Midway through the third, first-year guard Emily Todd led a 12-2 run with a pair of 3-pointers, cutting the lead to 53-28 with four minutes remaining in the quarter.
“During the run, we huddled together and decided to not focus on the scoreboard but on every possession … it was a good bonding experience being down [by a lot of points],” commented Rowlands.
The Spartans’ 35 turnovers gave the Violets the opportunity to score 38 points. Graduate student guard Kaitlyn Reed from NYU managed to record twelve steals alone.
Rowlands noted that the Spartans had some problems on the court. She said, “[Hellmann] got into foul trouble, so we struggled a bit.”
Todd was able to bounce back from a poor shooting night and dropped 12 points, all coming from 3-pointers.
The Spartans look to win their first University Athletic Association game during Throwback Weekend, playing Brandeis on Friday, Feb. 2 at 6 p.m. and NYU on Sunday, Feb. 4 at 2 p.m.
“I’m excited … since we played them already we have a better idea this time,” said Rowlands. “The energy will be high.”
The women’s team will be sporting the historic throwback jerseys of Mather College, and games will be held at Adelbert Gymnasium.