No. 9 Women's Hoops Falls at No. 2 Chicago 76-67 in Season Finale
Chicago, Ill., February 25, 2012 – The No. 9 ranked Washington University in St. Louis women’s basketball team dropped its regular season finale at No. 2 ranked University of Chicago, 76-67, on Saturday afternoon in the Windy City.
Chicago, the 2012 University Athletic Association (UAA) champion, improved its overall record to 25-0 (14-0 UAA) and remained one of four unbeaten teams in Division III. Washington U. concludes regular season play with a 20-5 record (10-4 UAA) and placed second in the conference.
Freshman Melissa Gilkey had 15 points to lead Washington U., while senior Dani Hoover (14 points), senior Claire Schaeperkoetter (12 points) and freshman Alyssa Johanson (10 points) also scored in double figures for the Bears.
Washington U.’s defense suffocated Chicago in the early stages of the contest, as the Maroons missed seven of their first eight shots from the field. The Bears largest lead of game was six (10-4) following a jumper by Hoover with 15:44 to play.
Chicago took its first lead of the game (17-16) with 10:36 remaining in the half following a three-pointer by Hannah Ballard from the top of the key. The Bears regained the lead on a jumper by Gilkey with 8:28 to play, but that was the last lead of the contest for Washington U.
Joann Torres nailed back-to-back three’s in a span of 38 seconds to highlight a 10-0 by Chicago as they built a 29-20 advantage. The Maroons took their largest lead of the first half (41-25) after a jumper by Morgan Herrick, but Hoover banked in a three-pointer from 25-feet out with six seconds remaining to make it 41-28 at halftime.
Herrick lead all scorers with 14 points on 8-of-8 shooting from the foul line, as Chicago connected on 16-of-19 free-throws in the first half. Junior Jordan Rettig led the Bears with six points, as Washington U. shot just 29 percent (9-31) from the field. The Bears had one field goal in final 8:28 of the first half, hitting one of their final 11 from the field.
Washington U. scored 10 of the first 11 points of the second half to get right back into the contest at 42-38. Schaeperkoetter nailed a three-pointer from the wing and Hoover had a three-point play during the 10-1 run. The Maroons answered back with five-straight points before a Washington U. full timeout.
Four-straight points by Gilkey got the Chicago lead down to five (47-42), and then a three-pointer by Schaeperkoetter made it a four-point game (53-49) with 10:49 to play. That would be as close as the Bears would get as Chicago extended its regular-season winning streak to 43 games and its home court winning streak to 25 games.
Morgan Herrick led all scores with 24 points on 10-of-10 shooting from the foul line, while Ballard (13 points), Taylor Simpson (10 points) and Torres (10 points) also scored in double figures on Senior Day. Chicago connected on 31-of-37 from the foul line, a season-high for free-throws made by the Maroons.
The 2012 NCAA Division III Women’s Basketball selection show will be aired on www.ncaa.com, on Monday, Feb. 26, at 1:30 p.m. Fans will have the opportunity to watch the selection show in the Fun Room at the Danforth University Center (DUC). Chicago received the UAA’s automatic bid, while Washington U. is looking to receive an at-large bid.
Bear Notebook: Hoover played in her 100th career game on Saturday … Chicago is ranked No. 1 and Washington U. No. 3 in the NCAA Division III Central Region Rankings … Washington U. leads the all-time series with Chicago 42-13, but the Maroons have won four of the last five meetings … Chicago complete its first undefeated regular season in the program’s 41-year history.