No. 9 WUSTL Women’s Basketball Wins McWilliams Classic with 63-60 Victory Over Ohio Northern
St. Louis, Mo., Nov. 17, 2012 – The No. 9-ranked Washington University in St. Louis women’s basketball team battled its way to a 63-60 win over Ohio Northern University in the championship game of the 12th Annual McWilliams Classic Saturday night at the WU Field House.
Sophomore guard Maddy Scheppers was named the Jacqueline Bickel Schapp Most Valuable Player of the McWilliams Classic. Sophomore forward Melissa Gilkey was also named to the all-tournament team for the Bears, along with Ohio Northern’s Brooke Espenschied and Joanna Snyder, Buena Vista University’s Malarie Gilley, and Lake Forest College’s Liz Radtke.
Ohio Northern gained a three-point advantage (57-54) after a layup by Snyder with 3:28 remaining in the game, but Washington U. answered with a 7-0 run. Baskets by Gilkey and junior forward Jordan Rettig made it 58-57 in favor of the Bears, before a three-pointer by Scheppers gave Washington U. its largest lead of the game, 61-57, with 1:19 left. Espenschied hit a three-pointer from the corner to bring Ohio Northern within 61-60 with 49.7 seconds on the clock. On the Bears’ next possession, sophomore guard Alyssa Johanson’s jumper missed the mark, but Rettig got the offensive rebound. The Bears tossed the ball around for about 10 seconds before the Polar Bears fouled Johanson, who made both ends of the bonus free-throw opportunity, putting the Bears’ ahead 63-60 with 10.9 seconds left. Ohio Northern managed to get two three-point attempts off in the final five seconds, but the second bounced off the rim and Scheppers grabbed the rebound to seal the win for Washington U.
Ohio Northern jumped out to an 8-2 lead in the first four minutes of the game, and a basket by Cenzie Yoder gave the Polar Bears their largest lead of the game, 14-5, with 11:05 to play in the first half. Washington U. answered with a 9-4 run, capped by a four-point play by junior guard Lucy Montgomery to cut the lead to 18-14 with 8:59 left in the half.
After a three-pointer by ONU gave the Polar Bears a 23-16 lead, Washington U. went on a 10-2 run capped by a pair of free throws by Scheppers to take its first lead of the game, 26-25, with 2:46 left in the first half. Ohio Northern outscored the Bears 6-2 to finish the half and head to the break with a 31-28 lead. The Polar Bears shot 51.9 percent from the field in the first half, while Washington U. shot 33.3 percent. Washington U. tied the game at 41-41 on a free throw by Gilkey with 14:15 left in the second half. The Polar Bears scored the next five points to regain the lead, 46-41. A pair of layups by Gilkey, followed by a free throw and a second-chance jumper by Johanson gave the Bears the lead back, 48-46 with 9:33 remaining.
Washington U. shot 45.1 percent from the field in the game, including 58.3 percent in the second half. Ohio Northern finished with 42.9 percent field-goal shooting. The Bears were 13-of-21 from the free-throw line in the game, while ONU was 3-of-3. Washington U. outrebounded Ohio Northern 38-29.
Four players scored in double figures for the Bears, led by Rettig (13 points, six rebounds) and Gilkey (13 points, five rebounds). They combined for 23 second-half points for the Bears. Johanson added 11 points and five rebounds, while Scheppers had 10 points and a game-high eight boards.
Washington U. (2-0) travels to Bloomington, Ill., to play in the Titan Tip-Off Tournament Saturday-Sunday, Nov. 24-25, at Illinois Wesleyan University. The Bears take on No. 4 DePauw University at 1 p.m. Nov. 24. No. 5 Illinois Wesleyan and No. 21 Coe College are scheduled to square off in the second game of the tournament at 3 p.m.
Bear Notebook: Washington University won the McWilliams Classic for the 10th time in the tournament’s 12-year existence … The Bears improved to 336-32 (.913) all-time at the WU Field House … Saturday’s game was the first-ever meeting between Washington U. and Ohio Northern.