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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Women’s B-ball thumps WashU

Two wins keep Judges’ postseason hopes alive

Published: February 1, 2008
Section: Sports

02010808.jpgIt may be too soon to count out the Brandeis Women’s Basketball team just yet. After two weeks of struggles, during which the Judges received no top 25 votes for the first time in a long while, Brandeis regained ground with a strong homestand, which was capped with a 66-48 drubbing of Washington University.

“It’s a great win,” Coach Carol Simon said afterwards. “They’ve [Washington] had our number for a very long time.”

The game started off slow for the Judges, as Washington jumped out to an early ten point lead. Afterwards though, both sides went frigid, not making a field goal for over three minutes until Kiersten Holgash ’08 sank a three pointer with under nine minutes left in the half. Still, Brandeis’s offense was not in top form. Holgash led the first half scoring with six points, both on threes, but a strong defensive stand left Brandeis down only by a basket at halftime.

“We weren’t making sharp cuts,” Coach Simon explained. “We were having to take tough shots.”

The second half was a completely different tale altogether, as Brandeis completely outran the Bears. Amanda Wells’ ’09 layup at the 12:12 mark gave the Judges the lead for good, and Washington could offer no response. Brandeis picked up 43 points in the second half alone thanks to a more aggressive approach to the basket that saw the Judges make 18 trips to the free throw line in the half alone.

“When you can’t make shots, you’ve got to find other ways to do it,” Jaime Capra ’08 stated. “Everyone played really well.”

Capra led the balanced Brandeis attack with 14 points and a team leading 15 rebounds. It was Capra’s second double-double of the season. Guard Jessica Chapin ’10 picked up 14 points of her own along with seven rebounds. Lauren Orlando ’09 held down the middle with 13 points, 11 coming in the second half, while Cassidy Dadaos ’09 was the last of Judges to reach double figures with 10 points. Holgash also pulled down seven rebounds of her own, as Brandeis held court over the glass, out-rebounding the Bears 51-39.

“We just attacked more,” Simon said. “We were too complacent in the first half, we just try to keep it simple. Everyone did what they were supposed to do.”

Halsey Ward led the Washington University offense with 12 points off the bench. Jill Brandt had 11 points and Kathryn Berger had 11 rebounds for the Bears.

The victory follows Brandeis’s dramatic win over University of Chicago 60-56 on Friday. The Judges led by as many as 15 points early in the game, but the Maroons refused to make it easy, taking the lead with just under nine minutes left in the game. That would be the only time they would be ahead, as a Jess Chapin lay-up gave Brandeis the lead for good, and free throws from Capra and Wells kept it that way.

Jaime Capra led all scorers Friday with 23 points and five rebounds. Chapin pulled down eight rebounds to go along with her seven points. Nofi Mojidi and Alex Leach led the Chicago offense with 14 and 12 points respectively. Chicago out-rebounded Brandeis 46-36, but the Judges had 22 trips to the free throw stripe compared to Chicago’s 12.

The victory Sunday was Brandeis’s first over Washington at home since 1997. The Judges hit the road as they take on Case Western Reserve University tonight at 6 p.m. and then spend a Sunday afternoon in Atlanta as they play the unwelcome guests to Emory.

Brandeis is still a ways away from boosting confidence about a postseason appearance, but if nothing else, hope is still there and the league remains wide open.