By Alan Brads
The Cedarville University women’s basketball team fell to conference foe Walsh 80-70 on Monday night, marking Walsh’s 11th consecutive win.
The loss could prove to be costly for Cedarville (13-9, 8-8). A Findlay victory over Hillsdale also on Monday night tied Cedarville with Findlay (9-11, 7-7) for sixth place in the G-MAC. Hillsdale (11-10, 8-7) sits in fourth place, which is the target to host a G-MAC quarterfinal game, but only lead Cedarville and Findlay by half a game.
Walsh (19-3, 14-2) sits safely in the #2 spot in the G-MAC trailing only the Ashland Eagles, who are undefeated in conference play.
The first half featured 10 lead changes in a back and forth battle before the Cavaliers blew the lead open in the third quarter by dominating the paint. Walsh finished with 50 of 80 points scored inside the lane.
Sha Carter led the way for the Cavaliers throughout the game and did much of her damage in the third quarter. She finished with a double-double via 21 points and 10 rebounds, and tacked on five assists.
The lead grew to as much as 20 early in the fourth quarter before the Lady Jackets climbed back into the game to make it a respectable 10 point loss.
“The way we crawled back into this game says a lot about us as a sisterhood,” senior guard Emily Chapman said. “Off the floor we love each other, that shows on the floor when we just keep fighting.”
Chapman finished the night with 17 points and a team high 5 assists. Lydia Sweeney and Allison Mader pitched in 21 and 20 points respectively. Those three led what looked like a promising fourth quarter comeback, but it was too little too late for the Jackets.
This matchup was selected as Cedarville’s #Play4Kay game, a movement in women’s collegiate basketball to raise awareness and support for women suffering from breast cancer.
Every year women’s basketball teams across America pick one game to wear bright pink jerseys, and fundraise for the Play4Kay foundation, named for legendary North Carolina State women’s basketball coach Kay Yow who died of breast cancer in 2009.
“We’ve always loved the Play4Kay game,” Chapman said. “Just selling t-shirts and fundraising for the cause, it means so much to us.”
“Good effort, that’s all I have to say,” Cedarville Head Coach Jason Smith said. “Our girls battled. I’m so proud of this team for fighting their way back into this game.
The Yellow Jackets will get one more crack at taking down Walsh in their regular-season finale on February 26.
Alan Brads is a freshman journalism student and co-sports editor at Cedars. He enjoys playing the drums and speaking Spanish, and watches Buckeye football like his life depends on it.