Dominant First Half Leads No. 23 WashU to Victory

Photo by Danny Reise/WUSTL Photos
Photo by Danny Reise/WUSTL Photos

St. Louis, Mo., Dec. 29, 2017 – The No. 23-ranked Washington University in St. Louis women's basketball team defeated Hendrix College 69-34 Friday evening in the WU Field House utilizing a dominant first half in route to gaining a 40-point advantage in the third quarter.

WashU improved to 8-2 while Hendrix fell to 7-3 on the season. The Bears held Hendrix to 18.5-percent shooting from the field (12-65), while hitting 40-percent (26-65), which included 18-of-34 (52.9%) in the first half. WashU also finished with a season-high 57 rebounds, while junior forward Stephanie Botkin (9) and junior guard Becca Clark-Callender (8) finished with career-highs in rebounds to lead the Bears.

In the opening four minutes of the first quarter WashU sank four shots from beyond the arc including two by Clark-Callender as the Bears led 14-2. WashU increased its lead to 20 points by the end of the quarter, 26-6, as junior guard Rachael Sondag also added six points.

The Bears continued to add to their lead in the second quarter as junior forward Caroline Ballard knocked down back-to-back triples to push WashU's lead to 45-8. The Red & Green held a 47-13 halftime lead as Clark-Callender, junior forward Madeline Homoly and senior guard Natalie Orr scored eight points each.

Clark-Callender tallied five assists while the Bears held Hendrix without an assist in the first half. WashU finished the opening half with 15 assists while turning the ball over twice. The Bears shot 52.9-percent from the floor (18-34) while holding the Warriors to 14.7-percent (5-34).

Hendrix closed the gap in the third quarter by outscoring the Bears 15-9. However, multiple baskets early on in the third gave WashU its largest lead of the game when sophomore forward Kristina Schmelter converted a layup on a dish by Clark-Callender for a 53-13 lead. WashU's shooting cooled from the field in the third while the Warriors improved to 42.9-percent (6-14). The Red & Green led 56-28 after 30 minutes of action.

The Bears closed out the game on a 7-1 run on baskets from senior forward Hannah Koenig and freshman forward Mary Bryggman preceded a triple from senior guard Amani Patterson. Patterson's shot from beyond the arc closed out the scoring at 69-34.

WashU improved to 2-0 all-time against Hendrix with the victory while improving to 6-0 on the year when the Bears outrebound their opponent. Homoly led all scorers with 17 points on 7-of-8 shooting from the field while sinking 3-of-4 from the free-throw line.

Hendrix finished the game with three assists while being held to 0-of-19 from beyond the arc. Meanwhile the Bears totaled 22 assists while sinking eight triples in 24 attempts.

WashU will wrap up its weekend against University of Wisconsin-Platteville at 2 p.m. Saturday in the WU Field House. Be sure to stay up to date on all your Bears scores and awards by following @WashUBears on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.