January 7, 2012

Huge First Half Run Lifts #18 Eagles Over Spartans in Key CAC Tilt

FREDERICKSBURG, VA – The 18th-ranked University of Mary Washington Eagles used a 25-6 run over the final nine minutes of the first half en route to a key 59-42 Capital Athletic Conference win over the York College Spartans on Saturday in Fredericksburg, VA. The Eagles, who improve to a perfect 12-0 overall, take over sole possession of first place in the conference with a 5-0 league mark. The Spartans fall to 10-3 overall and drop into second place in the conference at 4-1.

York got off to a good start as the Spartans jumped out to a 7-2 lead. The Eagles tied the game at seven before York forged a 14-10 lead with 9:49 left in the half. That's when the Eagles put together their game-winning run. Mary Washington's long run started with a Rachel Martin three pointer with 9:34 left in the opening half. York cut the Eagle lead to seven on a Taylor Santor jumper with 1:53 remaining but Mary Washington scored the final eight points of the half, taking a 35-20 lead to the break.

The Eagles opened the half by scoring four of the first six points of the half to increase the lead to 17. Brittany Hicks got the Spartans started on a 10-0 run as York climbed back into the game, trimming the Eagle lead to seven at 39-32 with 10:47 left. The Spartan deficit swung between seven and nine points over the next three minutes before the Eagles scored six straight points, increasing the lead to 13. Senior April Sparkman hit a three at the 5:59 mark, cutting the lead to 10 but that would be as close as York got the rest of the way. The Eagles scored the final six points of the game to provide for the final 17-point margin of victory.

The Eagles were very balanced led by senior Jenna McRae as the guard tossed in 11 points while she grabbed four rebounds and handed out four assists. Center Carol Dye tallied 10 second half points in addition to grabbing six rebounds. Senior forward Katie Wimmer contributed 10 points, grabbed six points, handed out four assists and registered four steals in 35 minutes of work.

York was also balanced led by Sparkman as the senior had 12 points and pulled in a team-high seven rebounds. Sophomores Kristen Haley and Brittany Hicks each had 10 points. Haley also had four rebounds and two blocked shots in 30 minutes of play.

The Eagles finished the game shooting 47.1% from the field including 33% (2-for-6) from three. The Eagles' shooting percentage was the highest registered by a Spartan opponent this year. York had not previously allowed an opponent more than 43% shooting for the year. The Eagles converted 9-for-11 from the free throw line in the win.

York shot a season-low 30.4% from the field including 6-of-20 (30%) from distance. The Eagles currently lead NCAA Division III in points allowed per game and field goal percentage. The Spartans 42 points are just over the Eagles' average of 40.1 points per game while the 30.4% shooting percentage is slightly above what the Eagles usually allow as their average coming into the game was 27.9%.

The Spartans were handled on the glass as the Eagles held a significant 59-42 edge in rebounding. The Green and White has now been outrebounded by 27 caroms in the last three games combined.

York returns to action on Wednesday night when they travel to Hood College to face the Blazers in another CAC contest. Tip time on Wednesday night is set for 6:00 pm from Frederick, MD.

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