Women back to winning ways

Anne Boyd

After a two game losing streak, the women’s basketball team is back on track. The ’Cats defeated Miami Saturday followed by a victory over No. 23 Boston College Wednesday with a final score of 75-61.

’Nova (16-4 overall, 6-3 Big East) took an early lead, racking up nine points in the first few minutes of the game. The Eagles caught up and tied the score at 12 at the 13 minute mark. But the Wildcats took control and, with a shot by Courtney Mix, grabbed the lead and kept it for the rest of the game.

The women started the game right, with strong defense against Boston College, tallying powerful rebounds and steals, as well as several blocks. The offensive outside play plan for the ’Cats was working for them too. The women used their time wisely, passing the ball around the outside before swishing in a three pointer as the shot clock counted down. When an opportunity for a strong inside shot appeared, the women capitalized on it and took the points.

Katie Davis and Mix led the ’Cats in the first half. Mix pulled down five rebounds and put up nine points while teammate Davis put 11 points on the board. Off the bench, Kelly Nash made three of four from the three-point range to help the ’Cats build a 15-point lead going into halftime.

The ’Cats started the second half with two points from Nicole Druckenmiller, who also put up a three-pointer a minute later. With 12 minutes remaining in the game, Trish Juhline found an opening in the paint and took a drive for two.

On the other end, Boston College was still unable to catch up. With the score at 49-42, Kate Dessart Mager, with an assist from Juhline, gave the ’Cats a 20-point lead.

With seven minutes left in the game, the Eagles started to buckle down on the ’Cats with their defense. After a steal by Davis, BC started to double-team the ’Nova guards, forcing them to rush and shoot the ball several times as the shot clock counted down.

Boston College narrowed the gap to 10 points with four minutes left, but ’Nova didn’t let the extra defensive effort shut them out. Juhline had possession and with the shot clock counting down, she was pushed. The foul did not stop her though, and as and Juhline was fell face first to the ground she threw up the shot and put it right through the hole.

With the crowd riled up about a few questionable calls, the ’Cats kept control until the buzzer and ended the game with a final score of 75-61.

Juhline and Davis finished the game with 16 points each. Mix put 15 points on the board, had eight rebounds and seven assists.

The game that got the girls back in the ranks after losing to UConn was the game against Miami last Saturday. Juhline went 0-for-4 in the first half but had 15 points in the second and led the’‘Cats to a 61-55 lead over the Hurricanes. Miami’s Tamara James, who was ranked nationally with an average of 23 points per game, injured her knee in the second half, and was forced to leave the game.

With the game tied at 38, Villanova took the opportunity to grab the lead and went on a 13-0 run which brought the score to 51-38. The Wildcats kept the lead for the remainder of the game.

The game against the No. 2 University of Connecticut Feb. 1 put the women on a two game losing streak. The Huskies defeated the ’Cats 58-38. ’Nova was not able to rely on their usual outside game because of the Huskies tough defense. The ’Cats were at a height disadvantage which allowed the Huskies to dominate both offensively and defensively.

The Wildcats return to the hardwood on Saturday, when they travel up to Syracuse, to take on the Orangewomen . Tip-off is set for 2 p.m.