Despite a double-double from junior forward Hillary Hellmann and a strong scoring effort from sophomore guard Kendall McConico, the Case Western Reserve University women's basketball team suffered a 73-62 loss to University Athletic Association rival Emory University on 'Senior Day' at Horsburgh Gymnasium on Sunday afternoon.
Hellmann made 10 of her 21 attempts from the floor for a game-high 22 points, and collected 11 rebounds and two steals for her fifth double-double of the season and the 11th of her career. McConico scored 19 points on a seven-of-13 effort from the floor with a team-leading four assists. Freshman forward Emma Cain contributed 10 points and six rebounds, her third double-figure scoring effort in the last four games.
Case Western Reserve and Emory played close throughout the entirety of the first half, with three ties and seven lead changes over the opening 20 minutes of the game, and neither team taking more than a five point lead. CWRU trailed by as many as four points in the opening period, but a jumper and a three pointer by Hellmann helped the Spartans regain a 12-11 advantage with 2:32 to play. Emory closed the first quarter with a 16-15 lead, but Hellmann hit another jumper on the opening possession in the second quarter, and the Spartans would not trail again in the frame. CWRU's lead surged to five points on two occasions during the second quarter – once on a layup by Hellmann with 5:30 to play in the half to make the score 24-19, and again on a three pointer by junior guard Alexis Amburgey with 4:11 to go to make the score 27-22. The Spartans would go on to carry a 32-30 lead into halftime, with Hellmann registering 14 points and seven rebounds during first half.
McConico would lead the Spartans in the third period, connecting on four of her five shots and scoring 11 points in the quarter. The teams would continue to go back-and-forth, however, with three ties and nine lead changes in the period. CWRU led by two, 50-48, after one of three and-ones in the quarter by McConico with 2:06 to go, but the Eagles closed the period on a 6-0 run to take a 54-50 edge into the final stanza. Emory continued to pull away in the fourth quarter, turning a two-point lead at the 6:49 mark, 56-54, into a 10-point lead, 66-56, with 2:48 remaining. The Eagles would lead by as many as 12 in the closing minutes, en route to the 11-point victory.
Erin Lindahl led four scorers in double-figures for Emory with a team-high 20 points in Sunday's game.
The loss dropped the Spartans to 4-17 on the year overall, including a 1-10 UAA record, while Emory improved to 12-10 on the year with a 6-5 UAA mark.
Prior to the start of the game, the Spartans' honored their lone graduating senior player, forward Kara Hageman. Despite missing the entirety of the 2017-18 season due to an injury, the three-time All-UAA selection ranks 12th in school history with 1,034 career points and fifth with 94 career blocks. In addition she set program records with 504 points in a season and 41 points in a game last year, en route to earning a spot on the D3hoops.com All-Region Third Team and the All-UAA First Team.
The Spartans will begin a three-game road stretch to end their season next weekend, starting on Friday, February 16th against Washington University (Mo.) at 7:00 p.m. ET in St. Louis, Missouri.