Fourth quarter bites UChicago women's basketball in 80-78 loss at Case

Britta Nordstrom and Taylor Lake
Britta Nordstrom and Taylor Lake

CLEVELAND – A big charge by Case Western Reserve University in the fourth quarter gave the hosts the lead late and the University of Chicago women's basketball team was foiled in the final seconds of an 80-78 loss on Friday evening.

The Maroons dropped to 11-6 overall and 4-2 in the University Athletic Association (UAA). The Spartans improved to 11-6 overall and 3-3 in league action.

The two teams exchanged runs in the first quarter, with Case posting eight-straight points and UChicago responding with an 8-2 run of its own. Freshman guard Miranda Burt scored, drew a foul and made the free throw for a traditional three-point play at 21-18. Early on, the Spartans leaned heavily on its outside shooting as five of their opening seven field goals were three-pointers.

Two layups in-a-row by senior forward Britta Nordstrom put the visitors ahead 25-22 midway through the second quarter. She accounted for 12 of the team's points at that time. Overall, UChicago struggled to convert offensively. The Maroons made 33 percent of their field goals and went 1-for-10 from three-point range in the first half. Burt provided that lone trey with 21 seconds left to draw within 33-32 heading into the break. Alongside Nordstrom's scoring output, senior guard Stephanie Anderson and Burt added six points apiece.

Burt got the Maroons off to a good start with a three-pointer on the opening possession of the third quarter. The visitors outscored the hosts 24-16 in the period thanks to a strong three-minute stretch. Nordstrom and freshman forward Taylor Lake combined for eight points to turn a 44-43 deficit into a 51-44 advantage. Freshman guard Mia Farrell's layup in the dying seconds made the score 56-49 heading into the final quarter.

However, the Spartans found their groove again and tallied seven-straight points to tie the game up at 56-all. Case's offense caught fire with 31 points in the fourth quarter and with 85 seconds remaining, the home side led by seven points, 79-72.

A jumper and a three-pointer from junior guard Elizabeth Nye made things interesting down the stretch. After Case missed a layup, UChicago snatched the rebound with nine seconds left in the game with an opportunity to tie or go ahead at 80-78. The Maroons missed a layup with two seconds remaining and fouled immediately. But the Spartans went 0-for-2 at the free throw line, and UChicago took a quick timeout to set up a final play. The inbounding pass went in the air to the paint looking for a quick layup, but the Spartans knocked the ball away to preserve their victory.

UChicago shot 39.3 percent from the field overall and 20 percent from beyond the arc (4-20). Case recorded a 45 percent shooting performance, including 40.9 percent from three (9-22). The Maroons derived a sizable advantage down low with a 50-39 rebounding edge, including 20-6 on the offensive glass. Case turned the ball over 17 times compared to 14 by UChicago.

Nordstrom submitted a well-rounded effort of 20 points, six assists and six rebounds. Lake tallied 12 points and a career-high 16 rebounds, which are the most by a Maroon player this year. Anderson put up 12 points and five rebounds while Burt submitted 10 points.

NEXT GAME:

  • Sunday, Jan. 29 @ 2:00 PM (ET) – UChicago at Carnegie Mellon University