Posted: Jan 20, 2013 9:29 AM
FULTON, MO -- The William Woods University women's basketball team rediscovered a bit of its offensive pace on Saturday afternoon as they ran out 75-66 winners over Stephens College. Olivia Storjohann had the hot hand for the Owls in the win as she went 8-of-10 from the floor for a game-high 19 points.
The game got off to a slow start, with neither team able to score for nearly two minutes. Katie Scherder would break the drought for the Owls, knocking home a trey with 18:10 on the clock, but Stephens would answer with a Kelsey Creed trey on its next possession.
After another pair of misses from each team, a jumper in the lane from lane by Jessica McConnell was turned into a three-point play for Stephens as she was fouled and hit from the stripe. The bucket was one of four consecutive makes that saw the Stars, who entered the game hitting at just a .338 pace from the floor, build a 14-10 lead with 14:17 to go in the half.
Stephens was able to maintain its lead and hot-shooting touch until the 6:04 mark, when a three-point play by Logan Blagg would put the Stars up 28-25.
Solid defense from the hosts would turn the tide, however, as the Owls held Stephens without a field goal for better than five minutes. WWU went on a 12-2 run, forcing the Stars to miss five straight shots, including a block by Scherder on a three-point attempt by by Haley Kahrs. Scherder was busy during the run, picking up steals on two of four turnovers forced by the Owls, handing out an assist on a Storjohann triple at the 3:14 mark and knocking home a pair of free throws with 1:46 to play.
After taking a 39-32 lead into the break, William Woods opened up a 17-point lead over the first 10 minutes of the second half, extending out to a game-high margin of 73-48 with 4:34 to play.
As the game wound down, head coach Dan Chapla cleared his bench, but a lack of game-time cohesiveness left the door slightly open for Stephens. Although a 5-of-7 shooting spurt including a trio of Creed treys allowed Stephens to close within nine, the Owls were able to shake off the jitters and hold on for the win.
William Woods moves to 15-2 on the year with a 6-1 mark in AMC action. The Stars fall to 4-15 on the year and 1-6 in league play. Although Stephens finished well above their season shooting averages, WWU held the edge on the floor (.471-.434) and from three-point range (.500-.474). Stephens held a slight percentage edge at the free throw line (.846-.750), but William Woods connected on 18 of its 24 trips to the line while only sending Stephens to the line 13 times for 11 makes.
Paige Stewart picked up a career-high 13 points as she earned quality minutes for the Owls, with Scherder chipping in 12 on the night. Priscila Santos finished just shy of a double-double with 8 points and a game-high 10 rebounds.
Creed led the Stars with 17 points on a perfect 6-of-6 night from the floor (5-of-5 from distance) with McConnell adding 15 and Taylor Payne chipping in 12.
The Owls return to Anderson Arena on Thursday night to face Missouri Baptist University. The game, presented by Red Weir Athletic Supplies, is the first of two Bobblehead Nights at William Woods. The first 100 fans in the door for the 5:30 p.m. game will receive a commemorative bobblehead of Screech, WWU's mascot.