Spartans Stay atop the UAA with Win over NYU

Spartans Stay atop the UAA with Win over NYU

Case Western Reserve University graduate student forward Kara Hageman and senior guard/ forward Hillary Hellmann each tallied a double-double on Friday night to help the Spartans top New York University 72-62 at Horsburgh Gymnasium in Cleveland, Ohio.

The win was the sixth-straight for the Spartans, the team's longest winning streak since a stretch that lasted from the end of the 2011-12 campaign through the first three games of the 2012-13 season.  CWRU improved to 10-3 overall, including a 2-0 mark in University Athletic Association play to remain in the lead in the conference standings.  NYU fell to 7-4 overall with the loss, including a 0-2 mark in the league.

Hageman led all Spartans with 19 points and a career-high 15 rebounds in the game, shooting eight-of-13 overall and three-of-six from long range, and collecting her fourth double-double of the season and the 14th of her career.  Hellmann finished the game with 11 points and 10 rebounds for her third-straight double-double, seventh of the season and 18th of her career.  It was the third time this season that the duo has each recorded a double-double in the same game, and the sixth time over their careers.

Junior guard Kendall McConico added 10 points and sophomore forward Emma Cain chipped in nine points and six rebounds for CWRU, which finished the contest shooting 36.8% overall (25-for-68).

CWRU took the early lead on Friday, holding the Violets scoreless over the first three minutes of play and taking a 7-0 lead.  A three-pointer by freshman guard Alyssa Hyland later in the quarter helped the Spartans extend their lead to eight, 12-4, with 4:59 left on the clock, and would go ahead by as many as nine in the period, before closing out the frame with an 18-13 advantage.  The Spartans would continue to lead until the 4:37 mark of the second quarter, when NYU tied the game at 26-26 on a layup by Shaye McGoey, and took its first lead of the game on a three by Katie Foos with 3:51 left.  However, the Spartans responded with an 11-3 run to close out the half, including a layup by Hageman with 16 seconds left to give her a team-best 14 points and push the Spartans' lead to 37-32 at halftime.

A pair of baskets to start the second half pulled the Violets back within a point by the 7:36 mark, but the Spartans answered with a 12-0 run to take a 49-36 lead with 4:11 remaining in the third, and would carry a 54-46 lead into the fourth quarter.  A layup by Cain helped the Spartans build their lead back to 12, 58-46, with 8:18 to play, but the Violets would climb back into the game, cutting the lead to five points with 5:54 to go with a 7-0 run.  NYU would get as close as four points down the stretch, but a key three pointer by Hageman with 2:28 remaining extended the lead back to seven, and the Spartans would shoot five-of-six from the free throw line down the stretch to secure the victory.

CWRU led for all but two minutes of Friday's game.  NYU was led by Katie Foos off the bench, who finished the game with 23 points, while Janean Cuffee added 20 points in the game for the Violets.

The Spartans will be back in action on Sunday, January 13th, playing host to Brandeis University at 2:00 p.m. inside Horsburgh Gymnasium.