The Beat Goes On, Spartan Women Extend Streak to 17

  YORK, PA-The York College women’s basketball team kept on rolling as the Spartans posted their 17th straight win, downing an out-manned Hood College Blazer squad, 92-45, in a Capital Athletic Conference contest on Wednesday night in York. The 17 consecutive wins for the Spartans continues to extend the school record streak as the Green and White are now 17-1 overall and 10-0 in the CAC. The Blazers fall to 3-15 overall and 1-8 in the league. The Spartans are currently ranked 13th in the nation according to the Top 25 and #14 according to the WBCA USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll.
    The Spartans actually fell behind 1-0, 20 seconds into the game but it would not take York long to assert their will. York scored 11 straight points over the next 2:28 of play. The spurt was fueled by sophomore April Sparkman (Walkersville, Md./Walkersville) as she connected on three bombs from distance as all three buckets came off passes from senior point guard Keli Ward (Nottingham, Pa./Oxford). The Blazers cut the lead to eight before the Spartans hit the Blazers with another run, this one an 11-2 spurt to push the York lead to 22-5. The Blazers trimmed York’s lead to 14 with 8:58 remaining in half. However, York got a triple from Donna Figenshu (Kennett Square, Pa./Unionville) that started a 12-3 run that increased York’s advantage to 35-13. The Spartans’ first half lead grew to as many as 30 points before York settled for a 51-22 edge at the break.
    The second half was much of the same for the Spartans as York head coach Betsy Witman seized the ability to get her starters rest and play her reserves. Every Spartan who dressed played a minimum of five minutes in the contest with no starter playing more than 27 minutes.
    The Spartans opened the second half with a 9-2 spurt and the lead would not fall below 34 the rest of the way. York’s lead grew to as high as 48 before the hosts settled for the 47-point win. It is the Spartans’ ninth win by 31 or more points this year.
    York was led by Sparkman as the sophomore poured in 22 points, one short of her career-high, in 25 minutes of action. Sparkman was 8-for-12 from the floor, 3-for-4 from three and 3-for-3 from the free throw line. Ward was simply brilliant yet again for the Green and White. The senior, who is the reigning CAC Player of the Week for the third time this season, had 17 points and 10 assists for her fourth consecutive double-double and the 23rd of her career. Ward narrowly missed her third career triple-double as she collected seven rebounds and had six steals in just 23 minutes of work. Ward was 6-for-7 from the floor, 1-for-2 from three, and 4-for-4 from the line. Senior Amanda Andrews (Fallston, Md./Fallston) was the third Spartan in double figures with 15 points in 24 minutes of work. Figenshu came of the bench to tally eight points and hand out a career-high six assists in her 19 minutes of play.
    Hood received 16 points from senior guard Jessica Parrish. Jen Willison led the Blazers with 10 rebounds while she also contributed eight points and three assists.
    The Spartan defense was outstanding all night as they recorded a school-record 24 steals. The Green and White forced 32 Blazer turnovers which they turned into 41 points. York held the Blazers to 31.1% shooting from the floor while Hood converted 29.1% from three. Conversely, the Spartans shot 53% from the floor and 50% (8-for-16) from three. The Spartans shot 73.7% from the free throw line while Hood was just 12-for-21 (57.1%).
    The Blazers did out-rebound the Spartans 33-31 as they are just the third team this year to beat the Spartans on the glass.
    The Spartans put their win streak on the line on Saturday night as they travel to Stevenson for a Capital Athletic Conference contest. Tip time in Stevenson, MD is set for 5:00 pm.


April Sparkman photo courtesy of Eric Linsley