Closing Second Trey Concludes WashU WBB Win Streak

Photo by Kevin Lanke
Photo by Kevin Lanke

Fulton, Mo., Dec. 6, 2018 – The Washington University in St. Louis and Westminster College women's basketball teams entered Thursday evening's contest with winning streaks on the line as the Bears held the lead for the majority of the contest but the Blue Jays improved their win streak to seven straight with a 70-68 come from behind victory.

WashU dropped to 4-3 on the year and Westminster won its seventh straight after starting the year off with a loss. The Bears shot 47.5-percent from the field while holding the Blue Jays to 41-percent, but Westminster held a 39-30 advantage in rebounds, with a key offensive board in the closing seconds sparking a lead-changing trey. The Blue Jays picked up their first win over the Bears in their third attempt.

The Red & Green forced a poor shot initially by the Blue Jays on their last possession, but Westminster secured rebound and kicked it outside for a triple to take a 70-68 lead with six seconds remaining. WashU was unable to convert a layup on the other end in a congested lane as Westminster's last minute heroics stole a victory from the Bears.

Senior Madeline Homoly led WashU with 22 points and 11 rebounds, as she posted her third double-double of the season and 12th of her career. Senior Rachael Sondag also reached double figures in scoring with 12 points. Senior Katie Claussner contributed a team-leading four assists.

Homoly and Sondag led the Bears to a 7-0 lead in the first quarter in the first 90 seconds of action. Minutes later a layup by freshman Hayley Semple put the Bears ahead by 10 but the Blue Jays trimmed the lead down to five before Stephanie Botkin's converted jumper with seconds remaining gave the Bears a 23-16 lead after one quarter.

Westminster opened the second quarter on a 9-2 run to even the game up before more than two minutes of scoreless action. The Blue Jays struck next and took a 27-25 lead momentarily. WashU responded with the next seven points including a three-pointer by sophomore Grace Fortmann. The Red & Green held a 39-33 halftime lead.

Sondag got the second half scoring started with a shot from beyond the arc assisted by Classner for a 42-33 lead, but for every basket Westminster seemed to have one of their own to keep the deficit close. A last minute steal by Homoly led to a layup from Sondag as WashU finished the third quarter with a 56-50 advantage.

The Bears six point advantage disappeared by the middle of the fourth quarter as WashU clung to a one point edge. A big block from senior Caroline Ballard with minutes remaining and the Blue Jays trailing by just one basket keyed an offensive possession that senior guard Becca Clark-Callender cashed in on with a drive and layup to give the Bears a 66-61 advantage with three minutes left.

The Blue Jays went on a 9-2 run in the final three minutes including the second chance triple to complete the comeback. Westminster refused to concede defeat closing the gap within one point on a three-ball with one-minute to go in the game. Westminster took just its second lead of the game with six seconds on the clock after an offensive rebound led to the Blue Jays lead changing triple, 70-68.

Kendahl Adams finished with a game-high 29 points on 11-of-20 shooting while Kallee Dowler also reached double figures with 18 points. The Blue Jays leading scorer entering the contest, Mirrkohl Johnson was held to nine points but tallied 16 rebounds as well as four assists.

WashU returns home for a two-game homestand, playing Fontbonne University Tuesday, Dec. 11 at 6 p.m. and Loras College on Sunday, Dec. 16 at 2 p.m. Be sure to stay up to date on all your Bears scores and awards by following @WashUBears on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.