November 26, 2019

Women's Basketball Sweeps With an Undefeated Week

This past weekend, Ratner hosted the annual Midway Classic tournament. The women’s basketball team had a tough draw to start off the tournament with no. 11 Trine University in their way. Both teams lit up the scoreboard to start off as the Thunder only missed a single shot in the entire first quarter, and the Maroons were able to stay tight as they hit six three-pointers in the opening quarter. The offenses did slow down as the game hit the two middle quarters and Trine started to impose their size advantage and dominate the paint. Kelsy Taylor, a center for the Thunder, scored 11 points in the third quarter alone to take an 11-point lead into the fourth quarter. The lead grew to as large as 13 points with nine minutes left in the game. However, the Maroons would not quit and were able to cut the lead down six points with some slick outside shooting. Eventually, the lead went down to only two points with UChicago having a chance to tie the game on a late possession; however the Maroons were denied on a drive with six seconds left. It seemed that the last-ditch comeback was all for naught, but the Thunder missed their two free throws and fourth-year guard Mia Farrell drove to the basket and picked up a foul. She was able to do what the Thunder could not, and coolly knocked down both free throws to tie the game and force overtime. With all of the momentum, the Maroons dominated the extra period with a suffocating defense that only allowed two points. Mia Farrell was the star of the night with a season-high 25 points and the vital free throws to force overtime. Fourth-year guard Miranda Burt hailed her team’s resilience in a possible season-defining win: “Our first game was against Trine, who is always a tough opponent. They came in ready to play with a great game plan of how to beat us. We took some punches, but fought back and refused to lose. Mia played an incredible game, and everyone on our team contributed to us coming back.”

With the win against Trine, UChicago faced Kenyon College with a chance to sweep the Midway Classic. The Maroons took the momentum from their comeback win against Trine and started the game on fire. UChicago ended the first quarter on a 29–14 run and followed it with a 27-point outburst in the second quarter as well. While Kenyon College did make a run in the third quarter and the beginning of the fourth to cut it down to an eight-point lead, the end result was not in doubt as Burt made big shot after big shot. She was absolutely on fire from deep, connecting on a school-record eight three-pointers on only 12 attempts to finish with a career-high 26 points. The Maroons ultimately swept the weekend with a 89–74 win. Burt was effusive in her praise for her teammates’ role in her record-breaking performance: “I’m still shocked about the record-breaking performance. I think, especially if you see the highlights, it’s really just a tribute to my teammates getting me open and creating for me. I am fortunate to be part of an amazing team, and I think this record goes to show that I was just the player who happened to be open.” After a disappointing first week of the season, an undefeated second week could be just the spark needed to create lasting momentum for the season.