Molly Davis 'wise beyond her years,' shows growth in another career-best performance
With less than 30 seconds left in overtime, freshman guard Molly Davis walked to the free throw line with Central Michigan up by two points and a chance to seal the game.
Davis missed both free throws and the Chippewas went on to lose in double overtime to Green Bay, 111-105.
That was how the first collegiate game for Davis ended Nov. 6 when she had the opportunity to help her team secure the victory.
In the season-opener against the Phoenix, Davis played 49 minutes out of a possible 50, scored 15 points, but what stuck out most according to teammates and coaches were those two missed free throws near the end of the first overtime.
"(Davis) is gonna be kicking herself for missing those free throws and a couple of those threes," coach Heather Oesterle said. "But she'll be back in the gym tomorrow.
"She's got a bright future."
Since the first game, Davis has continued to grow and has become the second-leading scorer for the Chippewas at 13.2 points per game. Davis trails only junior guard Micaela Kelly, who has been in the top five in the country consistently all season long.
Saturday afternoon against Toledo was an opportunity for Davis to step up in place of Kelly, who was having an off game shooting the ball. With that opportunity, Davis surpassed her career-high in points for the fourth time this season.
Davis finished the game with 28 points and played all 40 minutes of the tightly-contested, 73-66, victory over the Rockets on Saturday in McGuirk Arena.
Davis played arguably her best collegiate game against the Rockets, hitting two big 3-pointers to open the game's scoring. Davis later scored 13 consecutive points for the Chippewas in a nearly seven-minute stretch that stretched between the third and fourth quarters.
”Molly Davis she is wise beyond her years,” Oesterle said following Saturday’s win. “Her basketball IQ is off the charts, so when a team defends the on-ball screen like they did tonight she’s very capable of taking full advantage of how they defend it.”
Davis finished with career-highs with 10 shots made and 3-point attempts with nine against the Rockets.
The game against the Rockets also presented Davis with an opportunity at redemption. With 21 seconds left in the game, Davis walked to the free throw line with a five-point Chippewa lead.
Davis made both free throws and put the Chippewas up by seven, putting an end to any hope of a comeback for Toledo.
”The coaching staff, we all thought, 'There’s no way the rest of the season that Molly Davis misses free throws down the stretch,'” Oesterle said. “She’s a big-time player and big-time players make big plays and she makes big plays, the Green Bay game was the first game of her college career, but we knew, I would put her at the free throw line any game.”
For Davis, that tough moment at the end of her first game as a Chippewa paved the way for a performance like Saturday.
”That first game was definitely a learning experience,” Davis said. “Just the atmosphere and being able to stay calm during those situations.”
With at least 11 games still to play this season and three more years after that, Davis is almost certain to find herself at the line in crunch time again.