Lady Quakers overcome slow start

November 16, 2012

Senior Bria Eslick recorded her fifth career double-double in helping Wilmington to the victory. (Photo by John Swartzel)

Senior Bria Eslick recorded her fifth career double-double in helping Wilmington to the victory. (Photo by John Swartzel)

WILMINGTON – Senior Bria Eslick recorded her fifth career double-double as the Wilmington College women’s basketball team opened the 2012-13 season with the 59-42 victory over Bethany Friday in the opening game of the Hampton Inn/Damon’s Tip-Off Tournament at Fred Raizk Arena in Hermann Court.

Eslick (Cleveland Heights, OH/Lutheran East) scored a game-high 13 points with 10 rebounds, seven of which were offensive, as Wilmington overcame a sluggish start to reach the championship game. The Lady Quakers missed 16 of their first 17 shots, but solid defense didn’t allow Bethany to put substantial space between them and Wilmington.

“I was disappointed in the way we started,” said WC head coach Jerry Scheve. “We have a veteran team and I expected them to come out and execute better than we did.”

Wilmington’s biggest advantage came on the glass as WC won the battle on the glass, 42-31. They grabbed 19 offensive rebounds which led to 12 second-chance points. Additionally, the Lady Quakers forced BC into 24 turnovers, leading to 23 points.

“If we have to rely on shooting to win games, we will win a few games,” said Scheve. “We need to rebound and defend to win games when we don’t shoot well; and we did a good job at both.”

Sophomore Spencer Robles (Clyde, OH/Clyde) sparked the game-deciding 17-5 run in the second half as the Wilmington lead ballooned to 16 with 8:32 remaining. The guard came off the bench to hit back-to-back three-pointer and added a three-point play. She finished with 12 points tying a career-high.

While it was Robles who hit the big baskets, the Lady Quakers reserves were mostly on the floor during the key stretch. Robles was joined by senior Emily Zimmerman (Beavercreek, OH/Beavercreek), junior Bethany Ahrens (Versailles, OH/Versailles), freshman Allison Prine (Winchester, OH/Eastern Brown) and the lone starter, senior Brianna Peters (Alexandria, KY/Campbell County) for most of the stretch.

“When Spencer and Emily entered in the second half, we seemed to take off,” said Scheve. “It’s key to be able to go to the bench and have the play pick up.”

Senior LeAnn Topp (New Bremen, OH/New Bremen) added 10 points and six rebounds in the victory, while junior Haley Howard (Uhrichsville, OH/New Philadelphia), in her first career start, added a game-high four assists.

Wilmington (1-0) will host No. 12 Hope 3 p.m. Saturday in the championship game of the Tip-Off Tournament. Hope advanced to the title game with a 70-48 victory over Denison.

Wilmington vs. BETHANY (Hampton Inn/Damon Grill Tip-Off Tournament)

Friday, November 16, 2012 Final
BETHANY (Hampton Inn/Damon Grill Tip-Off Tournament)
Raizk Arena at Hermann Court
Friday, November 16, 2012
6:00 PM