by Abigail Hintz
Senior Day could not have gone better for the Cedarville Lady Jackets, who took down Ursuline 102-80 in their final home regular season game. The win held immense significance in the G-MAC Tournament, granting Cedarville (20-6, 16-4 G-MAC) a first round home game on March 5. In terms of the regular season, the Jackets end undefeated at home and are currently on a four game win streak heading into their final two games before the tournament.
The highlight of the game itself was the threat Cedarville posed from the 3-point line. They smashed the team record for 3-pointers in a single game with 23. The mark also sets a new G-MAC single-game record and is the most triples hit in a game by a team in the NCAA this season.
Freshman guard Emily Chapman went 5-5 from behind the arc, tying senior Baylee Bennett and her coach, Kari Hoffman, for the accuracy record. The team as a whole shot 3-pointers at a whopping 58 percent.
The team’s five seniors contributed 48 points and 12 threes to the win. Regina Hochstetler had 18 points and a team-high six assists. Bennett and Abby Wolford had 16 and 11 points, respectively. Ellie Juengel contributed three points and three rebounds. Kelly Poole clocked minutes for only the second time since her injury in January, and was able to add a rebound and an assist.
“Everyone just played awesome. We played hard, shot lights out,” said Poole. “It was a good win.”
Sophomore Ashlyn Huffman had a commanding performance with a team-high 21 points and eight rebounds. Chapman also had a good all around game with 15 points, all coming from behind the arc.
A well-rounded first quarter set the team up for a dominant afternoon. An abnormal lineup due to Senior Day was no problem as they stayed ahead for the majority of the fourth quarter, though they could not manage to bury the Arrows. Toward the end of the first quarter the Lady Jackets gained control, going into the second quarter up 26-21.
They found their groove in the second quarter, going up 34-22 in the fourth minute. From behind the arc, the Jackets couldn’t miss, shooting 8-13. The team put down 3-pointers in six straight possessions, going up eighteen points in just under three minutes to make it 46-30. They were simply dominant all quarter, going into halftime up 54-39.
The Jackets relaxed in the third quarter, but not to their benefit. The Arrows were never within a dangerous margin, but that was due to unforced errors on their part. They won the quarter 20-18. The Jackets weren’t firing like they had been before, but managed to get out of the quarter up 72-59 regardless.
Hochstetler got her team back in the game with a 3-pointer early in the fourth quarter. With that boost in momentum, the Jackets were back to their second quarter form. They shot at 100 percent from the 3-point line, blowing out the record. With two minutes to play, all five seniors took the floor, only to be taken off for one last ovation. Despite the lack of experience on the court, the Jackets ended strong. Sophomore guard Annabelle Hinds drained yet another 3-pointer to push her team over 100 points for the first time this season.
The seniors get the chance to come back to Callan thanks to the win, but it’s still bittersweet for the five players.
“Its sad, but we still have a lot of games left, hopefully, in the playoffs,” said Poole.
Coach Hoffman called Senior Day special, saying, “These five mean a lot to me and they mean a lot to the program. For them to go out undefeated in the regular season at home, winning 20 games and still having a lot to play for… I just couldn’t be prouder of them.”
The Lady Jackets hope to keep their second place spot as they travel to Davis & Elkins College on Thursday, before ending their regular season at Alderson Broaddus on March 2.
Abigail Hintz is a freshman journalism major and sports writer for Cedars. She loves sending people GIFs, reading books and watching way more soccer than the average person.