2016-17 CWRU Women’s Basketball Season Recap

2016-17 CWRU Women’s Basketball Season Recap

The Case Western Reserve University women's basketball team turned one of the highest-scoring single seasons in the program's history into a 13-12 overall record during the 2016-17 season, the team's winningest season in the last four years.

The team was led by a talented trio of players in All-University Athletic Association First Team and All-Great Lakes Region Third Team selection Kara Hageman, and All-Conference Second Team honorees Hillary Hellmann and Jess McCoy.  Hageman, a junior forward, set the program's single-season scoring record with 502 points during the campaign and led the squad with 20.1 points per contest (31st in Division III in 2016-17), while also setting program single-game records with 41 points and 16 made field goals against then ninth-ranked Washington University (Mo.) on January 29th.  She finished the year with 50 blocks, the third-most in a single season in CWRU history and 57th among DIII players during the campaign.

Hellmann, a sophomore guard/ forward, became the first-ever Spartan women's basketball player to earn an NCAA statistical championship, leading all Division III players with a 47.4 three-point percentage during the year, while averaging 17.5 points per game and setting a program record with 73 made three-pointers (surpassing the previous record of 61 set by Jasmine Rowan during the 2002-03 season).  In addition, her 437 points scored during the year were the fourth-most in a single season by a CWRU player.

McCoy, a senior guard, added 15.4 points per game during the year on a team-leading 49.5 field goal percentage, the eighth-highest mark in program history.  She also paced the squad with 6.6 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.1 steals per game during the year.

The trio accounted for 53.0 of the team's 74.4 points per game during the year, which ranked 22nd among all NCAA Division III teams in 2016-17.  The Spartans' 1,859 points were the most ever by a CWRU team in a 25-game season and the second-most in program history overall, while the team set program single-season records for field goal percentage (.426) and three point field goals made (220), and ranked first in the UAA and 13th in Division III with just 355 turnovers during the year.

A pair of freshmen made an immediate impact for CWRU, with point guard Alicia Marie Gonzales starting all 25 games for the Spartans during her inaugural season on the team, finishing second on the team with 2.9 assists per game and averaging 3.8 points, and guard Kendall McConico coming off the bench to score 7.1 points per contest.  Sophomore guard Alexis Amburgey appeared in each of the team's 25 games (starting all but one), scoring 3.6 points and collecting 4.0 rebounds per contest.  Senior guard Alex Roth also played in all 25 games during the year, averaging 2.6 points per game.

The Spartans opened their 2016-17 season strong, winning 10 of their first 13 games.  Included in that stretch were wins over Washington and Jefferson and La Roche College (a 2017 NCAA Tournament qualifier) to clinch the team championship at the W&J Springhill Suites Tournament in Washington, Pennsylvania.  Hageman was named the tournament Most Valuable Player and was joined on the all-tournament team by Hellmann.  CWRU went on to win five-consecutive games between November 26th and December 9th, the team's longest winning streak in the last four seasons.  Also during their non-conference portion of the schedule, the Spartans finished third at the Capital Holiday Tournament with Hageman again earning all-tournament team honors.

Case Western Reserve opened UAA play with a pair of road wins.  CWRU defeated then 10th-ranked Carnegie Mellon University 87-78 behind a 35-point effort from Hellmann, which included 20 points from the sophomore during the third quarter alone.  The Spartans followed that a week later with a 79-52 victory over NYU in New York the next weekend. 

Behind 28 points from Hageman and 15 rebounds from McCoy, the Spartans picked up an 80-78 win at home on January 27th over the University of Chicago, which qualified for the NCAA Championships and finished the season ranked 23rd in the D3hoops.com poll.  Case Western Reserve also swept a UAA weekend at home on February 10th and 12th, defeating NYU 64-60 and Brandeis 71-68.  The win against Brandeis gave Head Coach Jennifer Reimer the 120th win over her career to match the program record for victories by a CWRU coach.

In addition to the season records set, both McCoy and Hageman reached the 1,000-point milestone during the year.  McCoy surpassed 1,000 points at home against Washington on January 29th, and finished her career with 1,134 points, the eighth-most in program history.  Hageman reached the 1,000 point mark on the road at Emory University on February 17th, and will enter her senior campaign with 1,034 career points, the 11th-most ever by a Spartan.

In addition to their success on the court, the CWRU women's basketball team was successful in the classroom as well, with seven members – Amburgey, Hageman, Hellmann, sophomore Darby Kreienberg, McCoy, Roth and sophomore Gabby Wallach – earning UAA All-Academic recognition following the season.

The Spartans earned the following awards and honors during the 2016-17 season:

 

D3hoops.com All-Great Lakes Region

Kara Hageman

Pennington, N.J./Hopewell Valley Central

Third Team

 

All-University Athletic Association

Kara Hageman

Pennington, N.J./Hopewell Valley Central

First Team

Hillary Hellmann

Lakeside Park, Ky./Notre Dame Academy

Second Team

Jess McCoy

Cranford, N.J./Cranford

Second Team

 

SpringHill Suites Tournament Most Valuable Player

Kara Hageman

Pennington, N.J./Hopewell Valley Central

 

SpringHill Suites All-Tournament Team

Kara Hageman

Pennington, N.J./Hopewell Valley Central

Hillary Hellmann

Lakeside Park, Ky./Notre Dame Academy

 

Marriott Columbus Airport Holiday All-Tournament Team

Kara Hageman

Pennington, N.J./Hopewell Valley Central

 

USBWA DIII National Player of the Week

Kara Hageman

Pennington, N.J./Hopewell Valley Central

Jan. 31

 

D3hoops.com Team of the Week

Kara Hageman

Pennington, N.J./Hopewell Valley Central

Jan. 30

Hillary Hellmann

Lakeside Park, Ky./Notre Dame Academy

Jan. 9

 

UAA Athlete of the Week

Kara Hageman

Pennington, N.J./Hopewell Valley Central

Jan. 30, Feb. 13

Hillary Hellmann

Lakeside Park, Ky./Notre Dame Academy

Nov. 28, Jan. 9

 

The following were the Spartans statistical leaders during the 2016-17 season:

 

Points per game

Kara Hageman

20.1

Assists per game

Jess McCoy

3.0

Rebounds per game

Jess McCoy

6.6

Steals per game

Jess McCoy

2.1

Blocks per game

Kara Hageman

2.0