The Lady Eagles basketball team beat the no. 5 team in Division III, Marymount University, 65 to 57 in Saturday’s home game.
In response to beating such a high-profile team, freshman forward Erin O’Neill said, “We scouted them very well, so we knew what they liked to do and what we couldn’t let them do.”
The Eagles came out playing stifling defense, and did not let Marymount do much, especially in the first half. The Saints were held to just six field goals, the first of which wasn’t scored until the 10-minute mark of the opening half.
Marymount was further limited to just a 19 percent scoring average, compared to Mary Washington’s 46 percent. The great defensive effort of the Eagles was the main reason they led 34 to 15 going into the locker room at halftime.
The Saints opened the second half with an offensive resurgence, going on a run that at one point cut the Eagles’ lead to just six. But Mary Washington continuously responded with key baskets to make sure that Marymount got no closer.
Sophomore guard Katie Wimmer led the Eagles in scoring with 18 points and was later selected as the Capital Athletic Conference Player of the Week. Freshman Carol Dye and sophomore Lauren Kornacki added eight points apiece for UMW.
“I think we played the best we could have played,” sophomore guard Jenna McRae said. “They were the No. 5 team in the country. A lot of people predicted us to lose, so we had to prove them wrong.”
McRae was certainly vital in the Lady Eagles’ upset as she was second on the team in scoring with 12 points. But once again the key was on the defensive side of the ball for UMW and in the rebounding category as well.
The Eagles out-rebounded Marymount 38-25 and Sophomore Claire Brooks led the defensive charge with three blocks and two steals. Mary Washington also made the most of their free throw opportunities, going 15-16 from the charity stripe in the game.
“We played very well,” Coach Deena Applebury said. “We had excellent rebounding; we only gave up five offensive boards. There was excellent team defense.”
With this win, UMW improves to 11-3 overall, and more importantly, 6-0 in league play to keep them on top the conference standings. Their next game will be a road match against Wesley College on Jan. 27th.