Case Western Reserve University sophomore guard/ forward Abbey Lawrence and graduate student forward Melissa Heath combined for 55 points on Friday night to help lead the Spartans to an 80-68 win on the road against University Athletic Association rival Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts on Friday night. The win raised the Spartans' record to 9-8 overall and 4-2 in conference play, while Brandeis dropped to 12-5 overall.
Both Lawrence and Heath registered career-high point totals in the victory. Lawrence finished the game with 30 points, shooting 10-of-18 overall, including three-of-seven from behind the three point line, and seven-of-seven on free throw attempts. Heath came off the bench to score 25 points on a 10-of-16 shooting effort, all from within the perimeter, while connecting on all five of her free throws. Lawrence and Heath each collected a team-leading seven rebounds, while Lawrence also dished out a Spartan-best five assists on Friday.
Lawrence's 30 points were the most by a CWRU player in a game this season, and the most by an individual Spartan since January 7, 2017, when Hillary Hellmann scored 35 in a win at Carnegie Mellon.
As a team, the Spartans were perfect from the free throw line on Friday, connecting on all 22 of their attempts from the charity stripe.
After the first quarter ended with the score tied 15-15, the Spartans began to pull away early in the second period. An 8-0 run by the Spartans, capped off by a pair of layups by Heath gave CWRU a 27-20 lead with 5:06 to play in the half. The Judges would pull back within two points, but jumpers by Lawrence and first year guard/ forward Isabella Mills to end the period helped CWRU take a 33-27 lead into halftime.
A layup by Heath and a three pointer by Lawrence to start the second half helped the Spartans build an 11 point lead early in the third period, their largest of the game to that point. However, the Brandeis responded later in the period with an 11-0 run of their own to retake the lead, 42-41, with 4:33 left in the third. CWRU would regain the lead with 2:42 left in the third quarter on a layup by Heath, and would take a 52-48 lead into the final quarter of play.
The Spartans would never trail again in the game, and Lawrence and Heath each scored 11 points in the fourth quarter alone to help CWRU pull away. The team made all 15 of its free throws in the fourth quarter to lock up the victory, and the 12-point difference in the final score marked the largest lead of the game for the Spartans.
Case Western Reserve will conclude its four-game road trip on Sunday, when the Spartans face New York University at 2:00 p.m. in New York, New York.