Welcome back! What a day it was in D3 women’s hoops yesterday. Let’s get right into it!
Game of the Day: WashU @ Illinois Wesleyan, 4 pm EST
This is going to be a good one. Perhaps both of these teams deserve to be ranked. Perhaps both will. The bottom line is, WashU is still undefeated, having shown exeplorary effort in the comeback over #14 Millikin last week. IWU is 4-2, but those two losses are to Hope and UW-Whitewater, two teams ranked in the Top 4. IWU looked sharp in yesterday’s win over DePauw and will be on their home court, but WashU is looking better and better each time the Bears step out there.
Keep an eye on…
#7 Smith @ Trinity (CT), 3 pm EST
UNE (4-2) @ #11 Tufts (4-0), 1 pm EST
Swarthmore @ Washington & Lee, 12:30 pm EST
- No. 4 UW-Whitewater was the highest-ranked of the Top 25 teams that fell yesterday, as Calvin came up with an upset, winning 66-64 on Whitewater’s home court. Talk about a big-time win for Calvin, who is now 5-0. It was tight all the way down the stretch, with Calvin refusing to go away, though the Knights trailed 34-31 at the half. In perhaps one of the most impressive plays from my perspective, Gabby Timmer stepped up on the defensive end for Calvin, blocking a Whitewater shot with under 20 seconds to play, Calvin leading 62-61. After a pair of free throws, the Warhawks again had a chance to tie it on a three, but failed to convert. Playing in a conference that includes Hope and Trine, wins like this one are huge come selection time in March (though Calvin in my opinion is a legitimate MIAA contender).
- Whitewater wasn’t the only Top 10 team to fall. In another game I mentioned you should keep your eye on yesterday, No. 8 Trine suffered its second loss of the season at the hands of Ohio Northern, who is unranked, but also undefeated. Trine had a chance to go ahead late, trailing 51-50 with under 10 seconds left. But the three point try was missed, and Ohio Northern’s Brynn Serbin made a leap as the ball was traveling out of bounds of the hands of an ONU player. She grabbed the ball, and got it to a teammate before her feet landed out of bounds. The ensuing free throws were enough for a 53-50 win for ONU. Trine seemed to struggle more than I thought they would, but ONU is definitely a team I’ll be paying closer attention to in the weeks to come.
- #5 Trinity beat #18 Hardin-Simmons for the second time this week, winning both on the road, and at home. Trinity will be at least #4 in my Top 25 ballot this week. The Tigers beat HSU 81-68 yesterday, as their offense continues to roll, and that is without Maggie Shipley, mind you. Her presence is worth at least another 8-10 points for Trinity, meaning we’re not even seeing the Tigers are full strength right now.
- Augustana definitely has scorers. It will serve them well in CCIW play. Against Webster yesterday (an 87-64 win), four different players had double figures in points, including Carly Stone, who came off the bench with 14. Gabriela Loiz had 18 points in just 18 minutes of action and Presley Case nearly had herself a double-double, with 14 points and nine rebounds.
- In today’s action, I’m keeping an eye on some matchups that could impact the way the Top 25 shakes out. As mentioned above, #7 Smiths plays a talented Trinity (CT) team on the road today. Smith has been somewhat inconsistent against quality, yet unranked opponents to start the year. But they’re also 4-0, and I really want to get a good idea of where they stack up amongst the nation’s best. UNE also plays #11 Tufts today in a game that I think could be close. UNE is 4-2, having played well as of late, but nobody has been able to slow Maggie Russell.
Enjoy the rest of your day and your weekend. Be sure to read The Scoop on D3 Women’s Hoops each day, either right here, or on my Substack.