Spartans Fall to 24th-ranked Yellow Jackets 82-71

Spartans Fall to 24th-ranked Yellow Jackets 82-71

The Case Western Reserve University women's basketball team battled tough against 24th-ranked Baldwin Wallace University on Saturday afternoon, but the Yellow Jackets ultimately pulled away in the fourth quarter for an 82-71 win over the Spartans at Horsburgh Gymnasium.

The loss was the second straight for the Spartans, who fell to 4-2 on the year with the setback.  Baldwin Wallace kept its perfect record intact, improving to 7-0 overall for the campaign.

Senior guard/forward Hillary Hellmann led the Spartans with 16 points on Saturday, shooting six-of-13 overall and connecting on three-of-seven attempts from behind the three-point line, while adding four rebounds and a pair of blocks.  Freshman guard Abbey Lawrence added a career-best 13 points, while graduate student forward Kara Hageman scored 13 with four rebounds, four assists, two blocks and two steals.  Freshmen guard Alyssa Hyland notched 11 points and graduate student forward Mercedes Jones scored 10 on Saturday, with each tying for the team lead with five rebounds in the game

Hellmann got off to a quick start for the Spartans, scoring nine points in the opening quarter, and a layup by Hyland at the buzzer gave Case Western Reserve a 17-16 lead after the first 10 minutes of play.  Hageman opened the second quarter with a layup to extend the Spartans' lead to three, before back-to-back baskets by the Yellow Jackets gave them the lead back.  Up by two points with 5:47 to play in the half, Hellmann connected on a three-point attempt while being fouled, hitting the ensuing free throw to convert a four-point play and put the Spartans ahead by six, 28-22, which would prove to be CWRU's largest lead of the game.  However, the Yellow Jackets launched on an 8-0 over the next 90 seconds to regain the lead.  Case Western Reserve would have its own response, scoring six of the final nine points in the period to take a 34-33 advantage into the halftime break.

The Spartans shot 42.9% both from the floor (12-of-28) and from long range (three-of-seven) in the first half.  Hellmann closed out the opening half with 13 points to lead all players.

A three-pointer early in the third period put the Yellow Jackets back in front early, but a three-pointer by junior guard Kendall McConico and a layup after an offensive rebound by Jones put the Spartans ahead by three, 42-39, with 6:51 to play in the third.  Baldwin Wallace answered again, this time with a 7-0 run to take the lead, and would not trail again in the game.  The Spartans tied the contest at 48-48 on a layup by Lawrence with 2:04 remaining in the third, but the Yellow Jackets ultimately closed out the period with a 54-51 lead.  CWRU would not get any closer in the fourth quarter with Baldwin Wallace extending its lead to as many as 14 points, en route to the win.

Case Western Reserve finished the game shooting 43.1% as a team, and made eight of their 19 three-point attempts for a 42.1% mark from behind the three-point line.

Baldwin Wallace's Sydney Diedrich led all players on Saturday with 18 points.

The Spartans will be back on the road on Monday, December 10th, traveling to Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio for a 7:00 p.m. contest against the Ladies.