St. Louis, Mo., Dec. 14, 2013 – The No. 2-ranked Washington University in St. Louis women's basketball team led from start to finish as the Bears earned a 67-44 win over Loras College Saturday afternoon.
Washington U. improved to 8-1 with the win, while Loras dropped to 4-4. The Bears return to action with a road game at Millikin University Tuesday, Dec. 31. Tip-off in Decatur, Ill., is set for 2 p.m.
Washington U. jumped out to an 8-0 run in the first 3:18 of the game, and stretched the lead to 14-4 on a second-chance layup by junior guard Maddy Scheppers with 13:57 to play in the first half. Loras cut the deficit to 14-7 with 13:49 left in the half, but a three-pointer by senior guard Lucy Montgomery sparked a 15-0 run for the Bears over the next six minutes as Washington U. opened up a 29-7 lead.
Senior guard Jessy Rosen made a pair of bonus free throws and a layup by junior forward Melissa Gilkey gave the Bears their largest lead of the half at 33-8 with 6:12 on the clock. The Duhawks ended the half with an 11-5 run, but Montgomery hit her second three of the half and made both ends of a bonus free-throw opportunity to make the score 38-19 at halftime.
In the second half, Loras cut the lead to 40-23 with 16:42 remaining, but Washington U. went on a 10-1 run over the next four minutes to extend the lead to 50-24. During the run, junior guard Alyssa Johanson hit three-pointers on back-to-back possessions, and her baseline jumper made it a 26-point lead for the Bears. Loras got to within 22 twice in the next seven minutes, but another 7-0 run for Washington U. gave the Bears their largest lead of the game (66-36) with 4:13 to play before finishing with the 23-point win.
Washington U. shot 41.7 percent (25-60) from the field in the game, including 45.2 percent (14-31) in the first half. The Duhawks finishing with 35.4 percent (17-48) shooting from the field, and were just 4-of 15 from three-point range and 6-of-15 at the free-throw line. The Bears forced Loras to commit 22 turnovers, which led to a 24-15 advantage in points off turnovers, including 11 of the first 23 points of the game for Washington U. The Bears also dominated the boards, finishing with a 43-31 rebounding advantage after Loras entered the game ranked 11th in NCAA Division III with a +12.7 rebounding margin.
Gilkey scored 10 of her game-high 16 points in the first half to lead the Bears offensively. Johanson added 12 points, including 10 in the second half, four rebounds, three assists and two steals off the bench. Montgomery chipped in with eight points and season-highs of five assists and four rebounds. Senior forward Kristin Anda finished with seven points and six rebounds, while Scheppers had six points, seven rebounds, including six on the offensive glass, and three steals.
Bear Notebook: Washington U. leads the all-time series against Loras 3-0 … Eleven players scored for the Bears in the game, marking the seventh time this season that at least 10 players have been in the scoring column … Washington U. improved to 349-33 (.914) at home all-time … The Bears held Loras without a player scoring in double figures for the first time this season … Washington U. had a season-high nine blocked shots.