Huge Second Half Powers Spartans to a Share of the CAC Regular Season Title
FROSTBURG, MD – The nationally ranked York College women's basketball team used a huge second half to run away from Frostburg State University, 89-62, on Wednesday night in the Spartans' Capital Athletic Conference finale.
The win allows the Spartans to capture at least a share of the 2014 CAC regular season title. York improves to 22-2 overall and 14-2 in the CAC. With the loss, the Bobcats fall to 8-16 overall and 3-12 in the conference. York is ranked 12th in the current d3hoops.com national poll and 15th in the USA Today/WBCA Coaches Poll.
The Spartans got off to a sluggish start in the game as the long road trip looked to wear on the Green and White early. The Spartans held a slim 22-19 lead at the 9:23 mark but the Bobcats went on a 13-3 run to push out to a 32-25 advantage. The Bobcats eventually built the lead to nine at 36-27 with 3:57 remaining in the half.
Spartan head coach Betsy Witman called timeout and that break proved to be the catalyst of the York comeback. Spartan freshman Morgan Golec (Abington, Md./Patterson Mill) drilled a three from the top of the key to start a 12-2 run that gave the Green and White a 39-38 lead at the break.
The Bobcats briefly recaptured the lead on a three in the opening stages of the second half but York slapped the Bobcats with a 25-2 run over the next eight minutes to turn the one point deficit into a 22-point lead. Freshman Sam Hruz (White Marsh, Md./Mercy) was huge on the prolonged run as she canned a pair of threes and also had a traditional three-point play to account for nine points during the spurt.
Frostburg State would not get closer than 19 the rest of the way as the Green and White cruised to the 27-point victory. The Spartans outscored their hosts 50-24 in the second half.
Senior Brittany Hicks (Dover, Pa./York Catholic) was huge as the All-American poured in 24 points and grabbed 13 rebounds for her team-leading 12th double-double of the year. Hicks was 8-for-15 from the floor and 8-for-10 from the free throw line. She also had four assists and a blocked shot in her 31 minutes of work. Hruz was fantastic with a career-high 19 points on 7-of-8 shooting from the floor and a 2-for-3 performance from the line. Hruz added six rebounds, two assists, and two blocked shots for the Green and White.
Senior point guard Aja Wallpher (Ellicott City, Md./Seton Keough) dished out a game-high 10 assists while she also had eight points, three rebounds, and three steals in her 34 minutes of action. Senior Kristen Haley (Silver Spring, Md./Georgetown Visitation) was one rebound shy of tying her career high as she pulled in 15 caroms with eight points, five blocked shots, a pair of assists and a steal.
Haley and fellow senior Kelsey Murphy (Olney, Md./Good Counsel) both tied the school record for games in a career at 110. They have both played in and started ever single game of their Spartan careers. The win also extends the senior class's school record for victories to 82.
Frostburg was led by Elaina Hummel as the senior tallied 15 points but much like the first meeting, Hummel got 13 points in the second half once the Spartans already had the game well in hand. Hummel finished 3-for-8 from the floor and 9-for-10 from the free throw line. She also had a team-high five assists for the Bobcats. Simone Wise tallied 13 points for the Bobcats while Ronje James was also in double figures with 11 points. Deara Parker pulled in a team-high 12 rebounds for Frostburg while Jasmine Walker had 10 caroms and nine points.
The Spartans shot 41.3% from the floor as they attempted 80 shots for the game. They canned 7-of-22 from three and went 16-for-23 from the line including 15-of-20 in the second half.
Frostburg was held to 32.4% shooting in the game including 21.4% in the second half. They went 1-for-13 (7.7%) from three while they were solid at the line, knocking down 17-of-22.
The Spartans dominated on the glass, holding a 58-42 margin in total rebounds. York had a 44-24 edge in points in the paint and a 21-15 advantage in second chance points. The Spartans also blocked a season-high 10 shots led by Haley's five.
The Spartans close out their 2013-14 regular season with a non-conference match up against future CAC foe Southern Virginia on Saturday afternoon. The Green and White will honor their four seniors prior to the contest. Senior Day ceremonies will begin at approximately 12:50 pm.
The Green and White will have an eye to the south on Saturday as Christopher Newport travels to Marymount to face the Saints in a key conference match up. If the Captains win, they will share the CAC regular season title with the Spartans and will be the tournament's top seed by virtue of the second tiebreaker. If the Saints can pull out the home victory, the Spartans would have the regular season title all to themselves, and earn the tournament's top seed. Tip time in Arlington is set for 2:00 pm.