With their 18th victory secured, the University of Chicago women’s basketball team remain perfect in UAA play, with a 20–2 overall record. Having defeated NYU and Brandeis University, Chicago not only clinched a share of the UAA championship, but also secured an automatic bid to the NCAA DIII Tournament.
The Maroons went to NYU and claimed a 59–47 victory. This was the lowest scoring game the Maroons have had all season, scoring 35 percent from the field as well. However, second-years Taylor Lake and Mia Farrell led the scoring with 14 points each, with Lake securing 11 rebounds. Third-year Olariche Obi scored 8 points and dominated in rebounds, with 12. The defensive prowess demonstrated by the Maroons also contributed to the win.
It was significant to see how the Maroons managed to hold the Violets to 9 points in each of the first three quarters. The Violets were limited to shooting 30 percent from the field. In the fourth quarter, however, NYU outscored the Maroons 20–15. The Maroons led NYU in rebounds by a 49–43 margin. UChicago edged their opponent from the three-point line, scoring 37.5 percent of three-pointers, as opposed to the Violets’ 21.4 percent.
In their matchup against Brandeis, the Maroons proved to be too dominant, with an 81–56 victory. Farrell once again led the team with 15 points, while Obi contributed with 11 points and 8 rebounds. It was a team effort, with second-years Miranda Burt and Lake, third-year Jamie Kockenmeister, and first-year Marissa Igunbor each scoring 9 points. The bench totaled 28 points as opposed to the 24 scored by the Judges.
UChicago started the game with a purpose, leading the opposing team 24–12 at the end of the first quarter, and eventually posted a 54–26 lead at halftime. Midway through the third quarter, the Maroons led by 36, with a 68–32. Defense once again played a pivotal role in limiting the success the Judges had, having shot 31.5 percent from the field. The Judges matched the Maroons in turnovers at 20 per team. The Maroons, however, took advantage in order to score 19 points off of Brandeis’s turnovers. UChicago remained the agressive side, with 36 of their points coming from inside the paint.
When asked about what the team plans to improve on from last season, Burt said, “I think we have definitely learned from our successes and failures of last season. Last season we definitely learned that we need to finish every play in order to beat great teams and potentially win it all. That has been our focus this season in every game and every practice. We feel that if we approach games this way, we have the potential to make a great run in the tournament.”
The Maroons will face off against Carnegie Mellon on Friday, February 16, at 5 p.m.