Luke Rinne, Director of Athletic Communications
LEBANON, Ill. – Lewis University’s women’s basketball team rode a hot start to 77-65 win at McKendree on Saturday afternoon at Harry M. Statham Court in Lebanon, Ill. The Flyers improve to 6-3 overall and in the GLVC while the Bearcats drop to 3-6, 3-6 GLVC.
Lewis carried over its momentum from Thursday’s second half shooting performance into the start of Saturday’s contest. It shot 53 percent (9-for-17) in the first 10 minutes and used a 14-2 run over the final 7:50 of the stanza to take a 19-6 lead into the second quarter. Defensively, it held McKendree to just one field goal in the frame.
The Flyers scored the first 10 points of the second quarter to extend their lead to its largest of the game 29-6 after a three-pointer from Reilly Olmstead (Brownsburg, Ind./Brownsburg). Lewis continued to hold its lead between the 20-23 point margin until the final minute of the half when McKendree got a three from Sydney Diekhoff and two free throws from Callie Pohlman to cut the Flyer lead to 18 at halftime.
The Bearcats came out strong in the third quarter scoring the first nine points of the half and extended their run to 14 straight to cut Lewis’ lead to 38-29 on a jumper from Kaelyn Froebe. The Flyers pushed their lead back to double digits on back-to-back three’s from Lindsay Harrison (Yorkville, Ill./Yorkville) and Kaitlyn Williams (Homer Glen, Ill./Joliet Catholic) to build a 55-40 with 1:44 left in the quarter. McKendree closed the quarter scoring seven of the last 10 points to cut Lewis’ lead to 11 heading into the final 10 minutes.
The Bearcats opened the final stanza on a 14-7 run to get within 65-61 with less than five minutes to play. The Flyers finished the strong outscoring McKendree 12-4 with all 12 points came from the free throw line over the final 3:07 to secure the victory.
Lewis ended the game shooting 45.5 percent (25-for-55) from the field, was 8-of-23 (34.8 percent) from three and shot 83 percent (19-for-23) from the foul line. It outrebounded the Bearcats 40-33 and got 42 points from its bench in the win.
Harrison finished with a career-high 15 points to lead the Flyers and was joined in double figures by Kathryn Schmidt (Hampshire, Ill./Burlington Central) with 13 points and a game-high 12 rebounds while Williams and Taylor Gugliuzza (New Lenox, Ill./Lincoln-Way West) finished with 10 points apiece. Jenna Badali (Oak Lawn, Ill./Mother McAuley) finished with a team-high four assists.
Diekhoff led McKendree in scoring with a game-high 18 points and was joined in double figures by Christy Fortune with 14 points while Froebe and Jenna Krause had 10 points each. Pohlman finished with a game-high seven assists.
The Bearcats were held to 33 percent (20-of-61) shooting in the contest, were 6-of-16 (37.5 percent) from beyond the arc and shot 95 percent at the charity stripe.
Lewis concludes its three-game road trip on Tuesday (Jan. 12) as it travels to Springfield, Ill., to take on Illinois Springfield at 4:30 p.m.