An all-around strong effort at both ends of the floor led the No. 4-ranked Ashland University women's basketball team to an 92-77 win at Le Moyne on Tuesday (Dec. 17) afternoon.
The Eagles improve to 9-0 overall, and this marks the fourth time in the last five years that Ashland has won at least its first nine games of a campaign. The Dolphins are 6-5.
Ashland shot 62.5 percent from the field, its best single-game mark since Jan. 3 at home vs. Michigan Tech (62.7), and made 11-of-21 from 3-point range. Defensively, the Eagles kept Le Moyne to 4-of-19 from beyond the arc, and overall, AU boasted a 34-24 rebounding margin.
THE MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
- Both teams got off to a slow offensive start, but Ashland picked up the pace prior to the first-quarter media timeout thanks to back-to-back-to-back buckets from junior forward Karlee Pireu, senior guard Jodi Johnson and freshman forward Annie Roshak. The Eagles' six-point lead (8-2) lead at that point remained at the end of the first quarter, 16-10, thanks to an Eagle defensive showing which kept the Dolphins to 4-of-15 shooting from the field.
- The strong Ashland "D" continued into the second quarter, and at the second-quarter media stoppage, Le Moyne had made 28.0 percent from the field. The Eagles led 31-18 at that point, and by halftime, the advantage was 41-26, and both ends of the floor were clicking – Ashland shooting 58.6 percent, and the Dolphins just 28.1 percent.
- To start the third quarter, Le Moyne came out making five of its nine shots from the field, but the Eagles extended their lead to 17 points at 53-36 inside of the five-minute mark. Ashland pulled away for the remainder of the quarter, leading 68-46 going into the fourth, and went on to victory from there.
- Johnson paced a balanced scoring attack by collecting 18 points on 6-of-7 shooting from the field, 2-of-3 from downtown and 4-of-4 from the free-throw line. She added seven rebounds and four assists, and in the last seven games, is making 65.7 percent of her shots from the field.
- Roshak came off the bench to score 17 points on 8-of-10 from the field in 20 minutes, senior forward Sara Loomis added 13 points and seven boards, and Pireu was 5-of-5 from the field on the way to scoring a dozen points.
- Ashland ended the afternoon with 20 assists, giving the Eagles seven 20-plus helper games this season.
- The Eagles committed just eight turnovers in the final three quarters after making six in the first period.
- Ashland has won 18 straight regular-season non-conference games away from home.
- Le Moyne's Jenna Zimmerman led all game scorers with 21 points.
Back to Kates Gymnasium on Friday (Dec. 20) at 5:30 p.m. vs. Hillsdale (4-7).