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Women’s basketball has an up and down week

Published: February 2, 2007
Section: Sports


Brandeis womens basketball went on a low and high last weekend on a two game road swing. It started with falling to formerly 25th-ranked Washington University 50-69 last Friday but the team managed to rally over a sub-par offensive game to upset formerly fourth-ranked Chicago 57-48 last Sunday.

Caitlin Malcolm 07 led the attack with 14 points and dominated the boards with the help of forward Lauren Orlando as they each pulled down 10 rebounds. This was the second double-double performance for Malcolm this season. However, the main catalyst for the Judges was rookie guard Carmela Breslin 10. In seven minutes of action off the bench, Breslin hit three three pointers to help Brandeis break away.

Carmela is a tough kid, Coach Carol Simon said. Nothing really fazes her in pressure situations if its a high pressure situation, she just plays the game the same way. Shes a shooter, shes probably one of our best pure shooters and she got some open looks against Chicago and made them at crucial points.

The game started off with several lead changes Brandeis scored the first five points but Chicago responded by scoring the next ten and used an 8-4 run to take a 19-22 lead into halftime. Trailing 27-31, Brandeis saw Breslin enter the game and by the time Chicago called a full timeout, Brandeis had a 43-35 lead.

The kids came out strong, Coach Simon stated. I mean offensively, I dont think we executed extremely well, but defensively I thought we did a pretty good job on them.

Brandeis was helped out by Chicagos lack of free throw shooting, as the Maroons finished 11-22 from the charity stripe. In contrast, Alison Chase 07 was a perfect 4-4 from the line and finished the game with 10 points for her efforts.

The victory came two days after a disappointing loss to Washington University. Last years UAA champions, Washington struggled initially this season in the wake of several graduations, including their leading scorer Kelly Manning. Nonetheless, ranked 25th at the time, and with only one UAA loss, they were not to be taken lightly.

Wash U is a very good program in general. They are very disciplined, Coach Simon explained.

The Judges managed to start strong and built a 22-15 lead thanks in large part to Jaime Capra 08, who had seven points in five minutes. This was not to be, however, as the Bears closed out the first half with an 8-0 run and turned a 27-21 Brandeis lead into a 27-28 deficit. The second went downhill for Brandeis, as they failed to convert on their first 13 shots from the field while Washington used four three-pointers and dominant shooting to overcome free throw woes and walk away with the win.

Jaime Capra led the scoring for Brandeis with 13 points and five rebounds, while Malcolm chipped in eight points and five rebounds. Overall, though, the game was a struggle for the Judges, as they finished with a field goal percentage of 25.5% for the game, including an abysmal 3-25 in the second half (12%).

One aspect that has been especially disconcerting for Coach Simon has been the number of three point shots attempted with 21 against Washington followed with 22 against Chicago. If Coach Simon has her way, that number will go down.

We just need to run our offenses, we havent been doing that, Coach Simon said. When we run our stuff, we get high percentage shots. When we take quick shots, a quick three with 24 seconds left on the shot clock, thats not necessarily the shot were looking for. We can get a three anytime, that Im not worried about, but we need to run our stuff better.

The win and loss dropped Brandeis down a peg to number 18 on d3hoops and 19 on the WBCA poll. The Judges though will have their chance to exercise their home court dominance as they take on Chicago tonight at 6 p.m. and get a chance for revenge against Washington University Sunday at 2 p.m.

Although Brandeis has three division losses, Coach Simon isnt panicking now, as she explained that the team needs to take care of business.

Washington University was a setback, but with the ball on our court, this is the time for the Judges to lay the gavel down and show that they belong with the big dogs of the UAA.