Slow Start Dooms Women’s Basketball in Loss to No. 9 Wheaton (Ill.)

Dec 12, 2014


DUBUQUE, Iowa – The University of Dubuque women’s basketball team couldn’t recover from a 21.9% first half shooting performance as the Spartans fall to No. 9 Wheaton (Ill.), 83-74.

The Thunder (8-1) led wire-to-wire after bolting out to a 7-0 lead. A Kayla Springer three-pointer and a pair of free throws by Jenna Kotas trimmed the Wheaton (Ill.) lead to two at the 12:55 mark of the first half. It would be the closest the Spartans (4-3) would get after a subsequent 13-point Thunder run led to a comfortable 38-23 halftime lead.

Springer’s four rebounds and  3-for-7 effort from the field was a silver lining for a Spartan team that shot 7 of 32 in the first half and coughed up 11 turnovers.

The Spartans reverted back to their fast and furious ways in the second half and dampened the Thunder attack to the tune of a 15-2 advantage in fast break points and 17-4 edge in points off turnovers. After facing a 27-point deficit, their 51.6 % second half shooting sliced the lead to 15 with under five minutes to play. The Spartans couldn’t overcome the Thunder’s 23-26 free throw shooting in the second half as they kept the Spartans at bay down the stretch.

Kotas led the way with 19 points and six rebounds to secure her fifth straight double-digit scoring performance of the year. Springer added 17 points and six rebounds.

The Spartans faces an undefeated North Central (Ill.) (8-0) next Friday, December 19 at 7:00 p.m.