Spartans Top Juniata 70-46 in M-Club Tournament Finale

CWRU's Isabella Mills drives past a Waynesburg defender

Case Western Reserve University sophomore guard/ forward Abbey Lawrence scored 21 points, and first-year guard/ forward Isabella Mills notched her second double-double in the last three games, as the Spartans rolled to a 70-46 win over Juniata College in the consolation game of the M-Club Tournament in Alliance, Ohio on Saturday afternoon.

The Spartans have now won two of their last three games to improve to 2-5 overall on the season.  Juniata dropped to 1-3 on the campaign with the loss.

Lawrence led the team in scoring for the sixth time through seven games this season, while registering her fourth 20-point game of the campaign.  She shot eight-of-14 from the floor, including one-of-three from behind the three-point line, and added three rebounds, three assists and two steals.  Mills ended the game with 19 points and 16 rebounds, both career bests.  She finished the contest six-of-14 from the floor and connected on four-of-eight three-point tries, while also matching her season-high with six steals.

For her efforts, Lawrence was named to the M-Club All-Tournament team.

First-year guard McKenna Gross added eight points and four steals off the bench for the Spartans on Saturday.

The Spartans trailed early on Saturday, trailing by as many as seven in the opening quarter, but a three-pointer by graduate student forward Melissa Heath at the end of the first period helped CWRU close the gap to 19-15.  Four-straight points to start the second quarter by the Eagles gave them their largest lead of the game, 23-15, with 8:53 to play in the half.  However, the Spartans responded behind a 10-point outburst in the quarter by Lawrence, and eventually tied the game at 29-29 with 37 seconds remaining in the half on a layup by Gross, before a late basket by the Eagles gave Juniata a two-point advantage going into halftime.

Juniata increased its lead to six, 35-29, with 8:51 remaining in the third quarter, but the Spartans would once again make a run, tying the contest at 38 on a free throw by Gross with 6:05 on the clock, and taking the lead on a layup by senior guard Kendall McConico with 5:14 left in the third. 

CWRU led 41-40 with 4:20 remaining in the third quarter, before extending its lead with a 21-0 run that stretched to the 3:59 mark of the fourth quarter.  A pair of free throws by sophomore forward Olivia Perkins with 2:55 left put the Spartans in front by 26 points, 68-42, the team's largest lead of the game, en route to the 24-point win.

As a team, the Spartans finished the game shooting 35.5%, including 25.9% from behind the three-point, while holding Juniata to just 32.7% shooting overall, including a one-for-16 mark (6.3%) on three-point attempts.  CWRU's defense forced 24 turnovers in the game, and held a 27-6 edge in points off turnovers on Saturday.

Gracie Stauffer led the Eagles on Saturday 15 points and 12 rebounds.

Case Western Reserve will be back in action on Tuesday, November 26th, when the team makes the trip across town to face John Carroll University in University Heights, Ohio.  Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.