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NCAC Weekly Release (1-6-14) - Women's Basketball

NCAC Weekly Release (1-6-14) - Women's Basketball

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North Coast women’s basketball showed well over the holiday break as league squads combined to post an 8-3 record against non-conference opponents, while the 2014 portion of the conference schedule picked back up on January 3rd. NCAC play continues this week with four tilts scheduled on both Wednesday and Saturday.

ALLEGHENY moved to .500 in conference play after a weekend split at the David V. Wise Center. On Friday, the Gators battled top-ranked DePauw, out-scoring and out-rebounding the Tigers in the second half before ultimately dropping a 73-56 decision to the reigning NCAA Division III National Champions. Sophomore Jessica Mrdjenovich (Pittsburgh, PA/Oakland Catholic) scored a team-high 14 points as the Gators were able to upend Wittenberg, picking up a 53-50 conference victory on Saturday. Sophomore Rachel Vigliotti (Pittsburgh, PA/Oakland Catholic) hit an open three-pointer with 19 seconds remaining to essentially clinch the game for the Gators.

DENISON will take a four-game winning streak into this Wednesday’s clash with top-ranked DePauw. The Big Red improved to 11-2 overall following wins over Pitt-Bradford, Misericordia, and Wooster over the break. Gretchen Staubach (Madeira, OH/Madeira) led the team in scoring in two of Denison’s three victories as she posted 22 points against Misericordia, 14 at Wooster and 11 points in the win over Pitt-Bradford.

Top-ranked DEPAUW went 4-0 including a win over top-20 ranked Ithaca to win the Amy Hasbrook Memorial Tournament. The Tigers have now won 46 straight games, which currently ranks as the fourth longest streak in Division III women’s basketball history. DePauw has also won 65 straight regular season games and 43 consecutive conference contests. Savannah Trees (Libertyville, IL/Libertyville) was named the Amy Hasbrook Memorial Tournament MVP after scoring 16 of her season-high 21 points in the decisive second half against nationally-ranked Ithaca. Alison Stephens (Prairie Village, KS/Shawnee Mission East) posted back-to-back double-doubles during tournament and averaged 10.8 points and 11.3 rebounds for the four games. Stephens notched a career-high 13 points at Hiram and had a career-best 14 rebounds against Alma.

HIRAM dropped to 4-9 on the year, 0-4 in North Coast play after the Terries fell in their three contests over the break, including NCAC losses to DePauw and Wittenberg. Junior guard Kelsey Koskinen (Madison, OH/Madison) paced Hiram by averaging 16.7 points and three rebounds per game over the break.

KENYON played a couple of road games over winter break and extended its win streak to five games. On December 31, the Ladies made the short trip to Mt. Vernon Nazarene and defeated the host Cougars, 86-55. On January 4, the Ladies returned to conference action and rang up an 81-76 win at Ohio Wesleyan. Senior Maureen Hirt (Bloomington, IN/Bloomington North) racked up 50 points in the two games and also had a combined nine rebounds, eight assists, and five steals.

OBERLIN junior Christina Marquette (Huntington Beach, CA/Edison) became the seventh person in school history to surpass the 1,000-point mark as she scored 20 points and recorded 12 rebounds in a 56-44 loss at Middlebury. The Yeowomen started 2014 by defeating Wooster, 86-71, as senior Lillian Jahan (San Francisco, CA/International) had a career day with 27 points, eight rebounds, five assists and four steals.

OHIO WESLEYAN won its own Bishop Classic/Hopes for Hope Tournament after defeating Bethany, 93-58, in the semifinals and Adrian, 62-59, in the championship game. Junior guard Sarah McQuade (Dublin, OH/Coffman) was named the tournament’s MVP. She was joined on the all-tournament team by teammates LaNiece McRae (Youngstown, OH/Chaney) and Julia Grimsley (Alliance, OH/Alliance). Ohio Wesleyan then opened up the 2014 portion of the season by falling to North Coast opponent Kenyon, 81-76, on Saturday. Junior post Kristin Henning (Beavercreek, OH/Beavercreek) and junior wing Caroline Welker (Delaware, OH/Hayes) shared the Ohio Wesleyan lead with 14 points apiece, while McRae finished with 10 points.

WITTENBERG dropped the opening game of the 2013 Charles B. Zimmerman Memorial Classic 57-50 to Earlham before bouncing back with a 77-53 win over Case on day two. The Tigers then went on to split a pair of conference games, winning 59-43 at Hiram and falling 53-50 at Allegheny. Senior Amber Rice (South Charleston, OH/Southeastern) averaged 16.3 points during the span, while shooting .462 from long range and 15-19 at the stripe with 10 steals to boot. She matched a career high of 24 points against Case while shooting 7-of-14 from the field and a sizzling 6-of-10 from three-point range.

Despite dropping two games last week, WOOSTER senior guard Suvi Puripattarapan (Westport, CT/Staples) scored a season-high 10 points at Oberlin on Friday night, then tallied a well-rounded effort of seven points, six rebounds, and five assists against Denison Saturday.