Chicago, Ill., Nov. 21, 2015 – The No. 9-ranked Washington University in St. Louis women's basketball team scored the final 12 points of the second quarter to break the game open en route to a 64-40 win over Milwaukee School of Engineering Saturday afternoon at the Chicago/WashU Classic being hosted by the University of Chicago.
MSOE scored the first basket of the game, but a layup by junior Lily Sarros and a three-pointer by junior Zoe Vernon quickly gave the Bears a 5-2 advantage. After the the Raiders went on an 8-2 run to take a 10-7 lead, sophomore Natalie Orr converted a four-point play to give WashU the lead for good at 11-10 with 3:33 to play in the opening quarter. Her second three of the game made it 16-12 in favor of the Bears heading into the second quarter.
After MSOE cut the Bears' lead to 18-17 with a three-pointer, Sarros got a putback and senior Jordan Thompson followed with a three-pointer. A jumper in the paint from senior Amanda Martinez extended the lead to 25-17 with 6:20 to play in the first half. The Raiders scored the next four points to get to within 25-21 and force a WashU timeout, but the Bears responded with a 12-0 run that included seven points by Thompson and five by junior Jenn Dynis. During the run, the WashU defense forced the Raiders into three turnovers and 0-for-3 shooting from the field.
In the third quarter, the Bears extended the lead to 19 (44-25) on a jumper by Vernon with 4:10 remaining. The Raiders were able to cut the deficit to 17, but a pair of free throws by freshman Sarah Greene and a jumper in the paint by Dynis pushed the lead to 51-30 entering the fourth quarter. MSOE cut the Bears' lead to 18 (55-37) with 4:28 remaining in the game, but WashU answered and a layup by freshman Caroline Ballard and a free throw by freshman Becca Clark-Callender sealed the 24-point win for the Bears.
WashU shot 37.7 percent from the field in the game, including 44.1 percent in the first half. The Bears also made seven three-pointers and were 11-of-13 from the free-throw line. MSOE finished with 31.9 percent shooting from the field, but was limited to 1-of-11 from three-point range. The Raiders also finished 9-of-14 at the foul line.
WashU's defense had a season-high 14 steals and turned 22 Raider turnovers into a 26-9 advantage in points off turnovers. The Bears also finished with a 39-33 edge in rebounding, which led to a 16-3 advantage in second-chance points.
Thompson led a balanced scoring attack for the Bears with a season-high 14 points, including 12 in the first half. Orr added 11 points off the bench, while Dynis and Vernon added eight points each. Dynis finished 3-of-3 from the field, while Vernon grabbed a team-high six rebounds. Sarros and Martinez had six points apiece, and Martinez also equaled her career-high with four steals.
WashU improved to 2-1 on the season with the win, while MSOE dropped to 0-2. The Bears return to action by hosting No. 19 DePauw University, Illinois Wesleyan University and Illinois College for the Midwest Challenge Saturday-Sunday, Nov. 28-29. DePauw and Illinois Wesleyan will square off in the first game at 2 p.m. Saturday, followed by WashU taking on Illinois College in the Bears' home opener at 4.
Bear Notebook: It was the first time in school history the two teams have played each other … It was head coach Nancy Fahey's 690th career win at WashU … The Bears have forced 65 turnovers by their first three opponents of the season, and is +10.0 in turnovers per game … WashU has outscored its opponents 86-27 in points off turnovers through three games … The Bears had 10 different players score in the game, including the first-career points for freshmen Rachael Sondag, Ballard and Clark-Callender … Senior Katybeth Biewen had three steals in the game, bringing her career total to 130.