The Case Western Reserve University women's basketball team picked up its first win of the 2018 season on Friday night, topping host Allegheny College 69-60 in the opening game of the Greg Richards Tournament in Meadville, Pennsylvania.
The Spartans begin the 2018 campaign with a 1-0 record, and will now turn their attention Chatham University, as they face the Cougars at 11:00 a.m. tomorrow morning. Allegheny dropped to 1-1 on the year with the loss.
Senior Hillary Hellmann scored 10 of her team-leading 19 points during the fourth quarter of Friday's game, while adding a team-high 13 rebounds and shooting six-of-15 overall from the field. Freshman Alyssa Hyland began her Spartan career with 14 points, while graduate student Kara Hageman finished the day with 11 points and nine rebounds.
The Spartans jumped out to the early 5-2 lead in the first quarter after a jump shot from graduate student Mercedes Jones. The Gators responded with a 12-0 run to take a commanding lead at 14-5 with 2:46 remaining in the quarter. After some back and forth play, CWRU closed out the quarter with a three-pointer from Hyland to cut deficit to 21-10.
Allegheny opened the second quarter with a 5-0 run, but the Spartans quickly responded as they went on a 19-4 to cut the Gator advantage to just one point at 30-29 going into halftime. Hellman scored seven points in the quarter, while Hyland added five.
The Spartans continued to attack in the second half as junior Kendall McConico made a jump shot to give CWRU a 31-29 lead with 9:08 remaining in the third quarter. The two sides would exchange the lead throughout the quarter, but the Spartans would finish the period with a 47-43 lead after a free throw from sophomore Emma Cain.
Hellmann dominated in the fourth quarter as she scored 10 of the team's 22 points and led the Spartans down the stretch as she hit a three-pointer with 2:46 left in the game to give CWRU a 62-55 advantage. The Gators remained within striking distance, but key free throws from junior Alicia Marie Gonzales, Hellmann and McConico in the final minute of play helped to secure the CWRU victory.
Case Western Reserve shot 29.3% from the field overall in the game (17-for-58), including a seven-of-24 mark from long range (29.2%), and made 28-for-38 shots from the free throw line, good for a 73.7% mark.
Rylee Donovan led the Gators with 15 points and 13 rebounds in the game, while Delaney Arbore and Kaylah Pinkey each contributed 13 points to the team total.