Second Half Brandeis Rally Sinks Spartans, 69-66, in OT

Second Half Brandeis Rally Sinks Spartans, 69-66, in OT

The Case Western Reserve University women's basketball team led by as many 23 points, but a second-half rally by Brandeis University pushed the Judges past CWRU 69-66 in overtime in Waltham, Massachusetts on Friday night.

The loss dropped the Spartans to 6-11 overall and to 1-5 in the University Athletic Association.  Brandeis improved to 9-8 with a 2-4 UAA ledger.

Senior Jessica McCoy led the Spartans with 21 points on eight-for-15 shooting during the game, while senior Laura Mummey added 18 points, seven rebounds and three assists.  Freshman Hillary Hellmann rounded out the team's double-digit scorers with 12 points to go along with seven rebounds.

The Spartans led by as many as four during the first period, taking a 10-6 lead on a Mummey jumper with 2:33 remaining in the frame.  Brandeis tied the game at 11 in the final minute, but a McCoy three-pointer gave CWRU a 14-11 advantage heading into the second quarter.

Three-point shots by McCoy and Hellmann to start the second pushed the Spartans' advantage to nine, 20-11, just 37 seconds into the period.  Another three from McCoy at the 7:43 mark gave CWRU a 12-point lead, and capped off a 12-0 run for the squad.  The Spartans closed the half on a 14-5 run, leading by as many as 19 points during the second quarter, and ended the period with a 39-23 lead over the Judges.  Case Western Reserve, which outscored Brandeis 25-12 in the second period, connected on five three pointers in the second period alone, with Hellmann and McCoy scoring 10 and eight points, respectively, during the frame.

The Spartans shot 51.7% from the field (15-of-29) during the first half, including a 54.5% mark from beyond the arc.  McCoy led all Spartans with 13 points at the half, while Mummey added 11 during the first 20 minutes of action on Friday.

A 7-0 run to start the third period boosted the Spartans' lead to a game-high 23 points, 46-23, with 6:42 remaining in the period.  However, CWRU connected on just one more field goal the remainder of the third quarter, and the Judges climbed back into the game with 16-4 run over the final six minutes and 23 seconds of the period, cutting the Spartans lead to nine, 50-41, heading into the fourth.

Brandeis continued to rally back in the fourth, tying the game at 54-54 with 6:28 to play.  A three-pointer by freshman Alexis Amburgey and a jumper from McCoy put the Spartans back up by five, 59-54, with 5:14 on the clock.  Brandeis would get back within one, 59-58, after a pair of free throws with 56.5 seconds remaining in the game, before a Mummey free throw with 51.1 left brought the CWRU lead back to two, but a pair of free throws from Paris Hodges with 14.2 left knotted the score at 60-60.  The Spartans had one last chance to win in regulation, but a driving shot from Hellmann missed in the closing seconds of the fourth, sending the game into overtime.

The lead changed five times in the first two minutes and 30 seconds of overtime, before the Judges jumped out to a two-point lead, 66-64 with 2:28 left.  McCoy knotted the game on a jumper with 1:36 to play, but Brandeis' Heather Cain was fouled on a successful layup and converted the resulting layup to give the Judges a three-point lead with 12.7 remaining.  A last-chance shot from the Spartans fell short, giving Brandeis the victory.

Sydney Sodine led all Brandeis players with 18 points and 12 rebounds, with Maria Jackson adding 13 points.

Next up for the Spartans will be a Sunday matchup at New York University, the eighth-ranked team in the latest poll.  Tip-off for Sunday's game at the Coles Center in New York is scheduled for 2:00 p.m.