Women’s basketball rides bench play to keep undefeated record

Anna Schoenfeld | Contributing Reporter

The No. 7 Washington University women’s basketball team defeated University of Wisconsin-Platteville, 89-58, Saturday at Platteville’s Bo Ryan Court, moving to 6-0 in large part due to stellar bench play.

The Bears were led on the score sheet by sophomore forward Madeline Homoly, who came off the bench and finished with a game-high 24 points, the best mark of her career. The transfer from Division I University of South Dakota also reached personal bests in assists (4) and rebounds (11).

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Another pair of sophomores, guard Rachael Sondag and forward Stephanie Botkin, contributed to the Bears’ strong play off the bench, finishing with 11 and 10 points, respectively. Junior Jenn Dynis started and added 10 points for the Red and Green.

The Bears started off slow, with Platteville leading 8-4 six minutes into the first quarter. However, sophomore guard Claudia Smith nailed a pair of free throws to spark a 14-4 Wash. U. run that put the Bears ahead for good, finishing the opening quarter with an 18-13 advantage.

The Red and Green were able to respond to every Platteville burst throughout the game. When the Pioneers threatened to even the score midway through the second quarter, the Bears closed out the half with an 18-7 run, with 14 of the points coming off the bench, to build a 46-32 lead entering halftime.

Wash. U. kept the offensive and defensive pressure on down the stretch, outscoring Platteville 21-9 in the fourth quarter. The Bears held the Pioneers scoreless for the final three minutes of the contest, ultimately limiting Platteville to a 34.5 shooting percentage, compared to Wash. U.’s 44.2 percent.

Wash. U. finished with just four turnovers in the game, while the Pioneers had 18. The Bears converted the Platteville mistakes for 21 points. They also had the advantage in rebounds (41-29) and assists (16-7).

The Bears’ six straight victories to begin the season is their best start since they rattled off 14 straight to begin the 2014-15 season. They come home for a battle of Big Bend with Fontbonne University Tuesday.

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