W. Basketball ends regular season with two wins

By HALEY CROSSON | February 22, 2018

COURTESY OF HOPKINSSPORTS.COM Junior guard Madison McGrath helps Jays gain early lead in last Wednesday's game against the Washington College Shorewomen.

The Hopkins women’s basketball team picked up two wins against the Washington College Shorewomen and the Bryn Mawr College Owls this past week to finish out the regular season. Both of these games were won by two strong, balanced offensive and defensive efforts. The Jays scored over 60 points in each game and held their opponents to under 50. 

On Wednesday night against the Shorewomen, the Blue Jays were led by junior guard Lillian Scott, who had 16 points and an assist. She scored early points to set the tone of the game for the Blue Jays and some important free throws to secure the lead in the second quarter. 

The Blue Jays benefited early from two three-pointers by junior guard Madison McGrath, who gave Hopkins a 6-2 lead. Another layup by McGrath put the Blue Jays up 10-2, and they did not look back. She finished the game with 11 points and three rebounds.

The Shorewomen put up a good fight early in the third quarter, decreasing the Jays’ lead to single digits. The Blue Jays answered back and outscored the Shorewomen 15-10 in the third to head into the final quarter with a 48-34 lead. 

From that point on, the game was in hand. The Blue Jays did not allow the Shorewomen to get within 12 points of their score the entire fourth quarter and ended up winning by 14, 62-48.

Hopkins scored about half of their points in the paint to help them pass the Shorewomen. These points came from junior forward Maggie Spitzer, who finished with five points and seven rebounds, and sophomore guard Maggie Wodicka, who finished with six rebounds and eight points. 

The Blue Jays also got eight rebounds from junior guard Lexie Scholtz, who added eight points to the Blue Jay’s 68. This demonstrates the Blue Jays’ depth and versatility, key characteristics that will benefit the team as they move into their postseason.

Junior forward Marissa Varnado discussed the Jays’ offense.

“We were able to get offensive efforts out of many people because of our new focus [on the offensive end]. We are staying true to getting energy from our commitment to the defensive end to spark transition,” she said. 

On Saturday, in their final regular season game in Goldfarb Gym, the Blue Jays ran past the Bryn Mawr Owls, 68-36. They were again led by Scott, who finished the game with 15 points and two rebounds. 

Like their game on Wednesday, the Blue Jays gained an early lead from a layup by Scott with eight minutes remaining in the first quarter and never trailed for the rest of the game. 

Varnado proved to be a key player off the bench once again for the Blue Jays. She finished the game with 10 points and two rebounds. She also converted on a three-point play late in the second quarter to add to the Blue Jays’ lead and end the first half with a 29-16 lead.

Hopkins outscored Bryn Mawr in the third quarter, 14-4, and got baskets from Scholtz, Spitzer, Varnado, Scott, sophomore guard Jess Sweeney and freshman forward Elise Moore. Hopkins went into the fourth quarter with the game all but put away, with a score of 48-25.

The fourth quarter was characterized by more scoring from Moore, freshman guard Lyndsey Hoyd, Varnado, Wodicka and Sweeney. Hopkins was able to extend the lead even more in the fourth, winning with a final score of 68-36, the team’s second biggest margin of victory in the season.

This game proved to be a great team win for the Jays to end their regular season. It gave them three straight wins to end their regular season and enter the Conference Championship.

“We’ve used the past two games to prepare ourselves for the playoffs,” Varnado said. “We took time to consider what would work for us in terms of our offense, namely what our strengths are both individually and as a team and how we can better capitalize on them.” 

With these two wins, the Blue Jays finished the regular season with a 16-9 overall record and a 15-5 record in the Centennial Conference. They currently sit at fourth place in the Conference, behind Gettysburg College, Muhlenberg College and Haverford College.

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