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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Judges go 0-2 on the road against Carnegie Mellon and Case

Published: February 13, 2013
Section: Sports

After bouncing back with a win against the University of Rochester that broke their seven-game losing streak, the women’s basketball team suffered two losses on the road this past weekend. The weekend’s losses against Carnegie Mellon and Case Western Reserve—the Judges’ second matchup with both teams since facing them on their home court earlier in the season—result in an overall record of 8-14 and conference record of 2-9.

Compared to last week’s strong offensive performance, the Judges barely managed to break away from their opponents in the second half as they struggled to find their groove in the paint. Although they managed to stay in fairly close range of the other team in both games, they were still unable to come out on top, resulting in a 58-50 loss against Carnegie Mellon and a 50-36 loss to Case Western.

In Friday’s matchup against the Carnegie Mellon Tartans, the Judges got off to a slow start, resulting in 26 points at halftime and gaining 24 in the second. The Tartans had 31 points in the first half and added 27 more in the second, resulting in an eight-point win over the Judges. Although both teams had similar field goal percentages—Brandeis went 37 percent from the field while CMU went 38 percent—the Tartans were able to keep their momentum high enough to get a strong lead over the Judges throughout the game.

The biggest lead for the Judges came in the first half when they were trailing 9-14 with 13 minutes on the clock and an impressive 3-point jumper by guard Kasey Dean ’14 triggered a shooting spree by the Judges. With eight minutes left on the clock, the Judges secured the lead at 21-16, but were unable to hold onto it for long as the Tartans came back to outscore them.

The Tartans managed to stay in close range at the end of the first half, but their big stretch came early in the second half as the Judges fell behind by as much as 14 points. The Judges struggled to maintain control of the ball on offense and managed to turn the ball over 23 times compared to the Tartans’ 15 turnovers.

Leading the Brandeis team in scoring, senior forward Erika Higginbottom nailed 12 points and tied with Dean for team-high honors with three assists. Behind her in scoring, sophomore point guard Hannah Cain recorded 11 points and achieved a team-high with three steals. Senior forward Samantha Anderson and junior guard Janelle Rodriguez led their team in rebounds by securing nine apiece.

In Sunday’s matchup against the Case Western Reserve Spartans, the Judges struggled to come together on offense, scoring 15 points in the first half and 21 in the second. The Spartans had 23 points in the first half and gained 27 more in the second, shooting 31 percent from the field while holding the Judges to 19 percent.

With a slow start into the game, the Judges managed to miss their first 12 shots from floor, nailing only two points by the 13th minute. Even though they were never able to hold a lead over the Spartans, the Brandeis team stepped up their shooting performance in the second half.

Senior guard Angela Miller had a breakout performance for the Judges, leading the team with 10 points, nailing two in the first half and scoring eight more with less than two minutes left in the game. Cain led the team with nine rebounds and four steals.

Altogether, the Judges managed to out-rebound the Spartans, securing 51 compared to their 47 rebounds. Indeed, both of these games presented a challenge for the Judges, but it wasn’t the first time the Brandeis players battled these teams in the same weekend. In their previous matchup, the Judges fell 65-60 against CMU and 50-46 against Case, a much different offensive turnout than their performance this weekend.

With only three games left in their season, the Judges are preparing to face what’s left of the UAA competition and hopefully finish with a few more wins in their pocket.