Women’s basketball holds on to beat No. 1 Toledo 66-61, advances to MAC Championship
It took another balanced performance for the women’s basketball team as it held off a second half surge from Toledo for the 66-61 win Friday.
CMU will now face No. 3 Akron in the Mid-American Conference Championship Game at 1 p.m. Saturday at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, where it fell in final second to Eastern Michigan a season ago.
Head coach Sue Guevara said she was pleased with how senior forward Schroll defended Toledo senior guard Naama Shafir in not allowing her to get the shot she wanted. Schroll blocked what would be the tying shot with 2.6 seconds left.
“Jessica (Schroll) is our best defensive player and she always guards the other teams best player,” Guevara said.” Naama (Shafir) torched her for 29 points the last time we played, and so I think she really took it upon herself to not allow her to get the shot off and had two really good blocks on her.”
Sophomore Crystal Bradford finished with 20 points and five rebounds. Sophomore forward Jas’Mine Bracey also had a big game, scoring 10 points to go along with five rebounds.
Junior forward Taylor Johnson nearly had a double-double with 10 points and eight boards. Schroll and senior guard Brandie Baker each had good games as well. Schroll had 15 points and four boards while Baker finished with six points and five rebounds.
The Chippewas began the game with four-straight threes, Johnson had two while Bradford and Baker each had one. This helped them get out to an early 15-8 lead, leading to a 40-30 lead at the half.
The team shot 50 percent from the field including 6-of-12 from downtown, the Rockets shot 41.9 percent from the field.
Bracey was part of the balance offensive attack in the first half as she had eight points and led her team with three rebounds.
Three point shots were falling early as the Chippewas began the game five-for-eight from three-point range.
UT was forced into 11 turnovers while CMU continued the pressure from yesterday’s win with six steals and four blocks in the first half.
Offensively the Chippewas were just as good early shooting nearly 64 percent in the first nine minutes of the game as they led 22-15 at the 10:54 mark in the first.
CMU got out to a 12 point lead after a 7-0 run pushing the lead to 27-15 at the 8:35 mark thanks to a made basket from Bradford. She had 11 points in the first half to lead her team.
A battle inside continued as both teams looked to attack the basket.
Bracey was a key presence inside for the Chippewas in the second half, grabbing a few offensive rebounds giving her team extra scoring opportunities in the paint.
Johnson and Bradford had to sit early in the second half, as both had four personal fouls with 14 minutes left in the game.
“I told Crystal, ‘you have to go straight up defensively, you cannot go in because their coming after you’. She had a big fat offensive rebound and went in under control put up a good shot,” Guevara said. “She missed it, but was able to get the offensive board and put it back in. Taylor and Crystal told me they can play with four fouls, and I said, ‘Yeah, but I need you defend with four fouls’ and they did. They were huge today.”
Toledo came out aggressive in the second, pushing the ball up the floor and trying to create contact and go to the line, cutting the lead to 47-38 at the 13:01 mark.
Shafir cut the lead to eight, 49-41, after she drained a three with 11:56 remaining in the game. She had 12 points to that point to lead her team.
A 13-4 run helped them to cut the lead to three, 49-46, with a little over 10 minutes left to play, giving them the momentum with Bradford on the bench with four fouls.
“When they came into the timeout I said, ‘look, Taylor is going to make both these free-throws and this is what we’re going to do defensively’,” Guevara said. “ I then said, ‘if she makes one, this is what we’re going to do defensively,’ but I looked at her and said, ‘Taylor you’re going to make both these free-throws and we’re just not going to allow a three’.”
But she and Johnson returned to help finish off the No. 1 seeded Toledo and put their team back into the MAC Championship game for the second-straight year in a row.
The lead was down to one, 62-61, with 29 seconds left with the possession arrow pointing Toledo’s way.
A Johnson rebound and a pair of free-throws, followed by a Schroll block and another pair of free-throws sealed the deal as CMU lead all but 46 seconds of the game.
Leave a Comment
Like us on Facebook
- CE: Now that CMU has been eliminated, is there a way to end Jaks…
- Track Watcher: With a dismal showing at the MAC meet, you always want to be…
- john wood: I have a 99 kawasaki zrx1100 and I need a engine case for it…
- Marty: Hi I am searching for a Honda rear wheel hub,shaft drive (d…
- Karen Ohneck: Scott you are awesome I have known you for8 yrs. These kids …
• Is your baby graduating CMU? Place a personal greeting and photo in CM Life's Baby Graduates special pages. Download the form here
• Contact local movers in Mount Pleasant to help with all of your moving needs.
• Download Campus Cash Coupons!
• Search for local apartments
• Add your link here