RedHawks soar over Chippewas
Published: Thursday, February 2, 2012
Updated: Thursday, February 2, 2012 20:02
A dominating effort on both ends of the floor made the six hour trip to Central Michigan University (CMU) worth it as the Miami University women's basketball team picked up its second straight victory, 79-57, over the Chippewas.
With the victory, the RedHawks improved to 17-5 overall and 7-2 in the Mid-American Conference (MAC) and held on to their second-place position in the MAC East Standings.
"This was a team effort on offense and defense," Head Coach Maria Fantanarosa said. "Our players responded to the challenge, and, as a team, they stayed very focused as to what they had to do."
Senior guard Maggie Boyer led all scorers with 14 points and was one of five RedHawks in double figures. Boyer's scoring effort not only helped the 'Hawks pick up a win, but it also moved her into 15th place on the all-time scoring list with 1,152 career points.
Junior guard Courtney Osborn just missed a triple-double, filling the stat sheet with 12 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists.
"Our starters came out very focused, very sharp and set the tone for the game," Fantanarosa said. "We also got some good additional minutes from the bench and the team did a great job working together."
The RedHawks started the game with an intensity that CMU could not match and were soon up 11-0 after only three minutes had expired. A barrage of three-pointers by Osborn and Boyer were the stimulus that pushed Miami out to its biggest lead of the half at 41-22 with 5:22 remaining.
Although Central Michigan was missing its top three scorers who had been suspended following an altercation in a game against Ohio University last week, the Chippewas did not go quietly.
Following an 8-0 run by CMU, the RedHawks' lead was down to 11 at 41-30 at the 3:08 mark. But that was as close as it would get, as Miami was able to grab the momentum back and take a 47-33 lead into the locker room at halftime.
"I think we learned [from previous games] that we need to continue to play for a full 40 minutes," Boyer said. "It's paramount that we play solid team defense, which takes the pressure away from our offense."
If the Chippewas were hoping the RedHawks would falter in the second half, they were sorely disappointed, as Miami never let up in its attack.
Sophomore guard Hannah Robertson started the half off with a three-pointer and the rout was on. Following a layup by sophomore forward Erica Almady, the 'Hawks took their largest lead of the game at 72-56 with just under three minutes remaining and coasted to victory.
"[This win] gives us a lot of confidence," Boyer said. "As long as we continue to focus on the little things, we're going to be fine."
The depth of Miami's scoring options was also on full display as junior forward Kirsten Olowinski dropped in 12 points and Robertson added 13 of her own to go along with the contributions of Boyer and Osborn. In her highest scoring effort since returning from injury, Almady came off the bench to provide valuable minutes and posted 10 points.
Miami will head back to Michigan Saturday to face the Eagles of Eastern Michigan University (EMU). EMU comes into the contest with a share of the lead in the MAC West division and a 7-2 conference record.
Tip-off is at 2 p.m. as the 'Hawks will look to make it three in a row with a win in Ypsilanti, Mich.