CHICAGO – Despite a furious fourth-quarter rally that tied the game with five minutes left, the No. 5 University of Chicago women's basketball team was unable to overcome a double-digit deficit in Monday's 84-71 loss to No. 4 Thomas More (Ky.) at the Ratner Athletics Center.
The shots went cold for the Maroons in the third frame, as the Saints (8-0) led by as many as 16 points late in the quarter. Kockenmeister drained a triple from the top of the key to kickstart a 5-0 run to close the third period, which was capped by a Burt steal and coast-to-coast layup and put UChicago within 11, 52-41.
The bank proved to be open to start the fourth, as Kockenmesiter touched a triple from the wing off the glass and in and then later connected on two free throws to trim Thomas More's lead to just six, 52-46. After the Saints answered with five points, Farrell went on a 5-0 run of her own, draining a 3 and a layup, to keep the Maroons close.
Two Lake free throws made it a four-point (57-53) game before rookie Elizabeth Shaw came through with two huge shots, including a 3-pointer with 6:13 left that brought the hosts within one, 59-58. It was Lake's three-point play that tied the game at 61-all (5:17).
That's when the Saints' Madison Temple stepped up for the Saints, answering with a jumper and her own bucket and the foul to push her team's lead back to three, 64-61. An Asyah Mitchell layup made it six, and the Maroons would get as close as three on several occasions, the last on a Lake layup with 2:07 left. A Saints' offensive rebound and layup stole back the momentum and Thomas More closed it out at the free-throw line down the stretch to seal it.
Thomas More won the battle on the boards, 38-27, and scored 25 points off 24 UChicago turnovers. The Maroons also did damage defensively, though, forcing the Saints into 23 turnovers that turned into 29 UChicago points.
UChicago stayed in the game by way of the 3, making 9-of-18 (50 percent) compared to 3-of-11 (27.3 percent) for Thomas More. From the field, the Saints held the edge, making 46.7 percent (28-of-60) compared to 40.7 percent (22-of-54) for the Maroons.
The Maroons led for most of the first half before the visitors made a late second-quarter charge. With a half-court extended pesky defense harassing the Saints' guards, UChicago led 16-11 after one quarter. Back-to-back 3s by Lake and Shaw gave the hosts a seven-point (12-5) lead at the 4:27 mark, before two-straight buckets by Thomas More cut the lead back to three. Obi's layup with 1:54 helped create the five-point lead heading into the second frame.
Thomas More slowly chipped away at UChicago's lead to start the second, finally taking the lead on a Temple layup to put the Saints up by one, 24-23, with 4:27 to go before the half. Thomas More – who forced the Maroons into 15 first-half turnovers, while committing 13 – would lead by as many as five before Obi's made jumper in the final seconds created a three-point lead for the visitors, up 31-28 at halftime.
Kockenmeister finished with eight points and three assists and Shaw had eight points off the bench for the Maroons, who lost for the first time this season.
The Saints' Temple led all scorers with 26 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the field and 12-of-13 at the free-throw line.
- Sunday, Dec. 16: UChicago at Carthage, 2P CT