UAA rivals dominate women’s basketball


Santiago Reyes/Observer

Driving down the baseline, Hillary Hellmann (24) looks to score an easy bucket against the Wash U defense.

Noah Crowley, Staff Reporter

After a four-game home stand, the Spartans went on the road this weekend and came up short against two opponents. The Case Western Reserve University women’s basketball team now has an 11-9 record on the season and a 3-6 record in the University Athletic Association (UAA).

The home stand that came before saw only one win, but it also saw the impressive breakout of third-year forward Kara Hageman. She earned the United States Basketball Writers’ Association Division III Female National Player of the Week Award as well as the D3 Women’s Basketball HERO of the Week Award. Hageman continued her strong performances, combining for 40 points over the two games on the road trip.

Second-year forward Hillary Hellmann, after having a relatively low scoring performance during the home stand, had a strong game against the University of Chicago Maroons but struggled again against Washington University in St. Louis (WashU). Guard Alexis Amburgey, another second-year student, did what she could to keep her team rolling as she led the team in assists throughout the weekend.

The first game took place in Chicago on Friday, Feb. 3. Chicago got out to an incredible start and led 34-15 after the first quarter. During the next quarter both teams scored 18 points, giving Chicago a strong 19-point lead heading into the second half. As the third quarter began, the Spartans looked strong, opening the half with an 11-4 run to cut the deficit to 12. The Maroons rallied back during the quarter and managed to end the quarter with a 16 point lead.

Down big, Hellmann took charge. She scored 10 of her 21 points in just the first six and a half minutes of the fourth quarter. Hellmann’s outburst lead the Spartans on a 20-8 run that cut the deficit to only four points, bringing them within reach of the lead. Despite her efforts, the Spartans committed two fatal turnovers in the final minutes, and the Maroons won the game by a margin of 13.

After the painful loss in Chicago, CWRU made the short trip to St. Louis, Missouri to play against a UAA rival. The Spartans played WashU just a week before and fell 92-79 when the Bears were ranked No. 11. This time, the Bears had moved up to ninth in the rankings, and their game seemed to improve as much.

Hageman led her team with 25 points in the loss, but it didn’t change the result. Even though both teams seemed equally matched in a close first quarter, the Bears took over in the second quarter and did not look back. WashU grew their lead to a staggering 32 late in the fourth quarter, and eventually took a 29-point victory.

The Spartans look forward to breaking another three game losing streak as they return home for a two game homestand against two more UAA teams. First will be New York University on Friday, Feb.10, and then will defend the Horsburgh Gymnasium against Brandeis University on Sunday, Feb. 12. There are still five games left in the season against UAA rivals, meaning the Spartans can still end the season with a winning record in their conference by winning all five of their upcoming games, or at least break even with four wins.