Women’s basketball strong in big wins

By: Danny O’Malley

The Xavier women’s basketball team had an impressive week, playing at University of Michigan and then hosting Arkansas-Pine Bluff.

The team won a hard-fought victory in overtime against Michigan 79-75 and also won against Arkansas-Pine Bluff at Cintas Center 69-39. The team’s record now stands at 2-1 under new head coach Brian Neal.

In the Michigan game, senior guard Shatyra Hawkes put up a career high 27 points and also added five assists, six rebounds and a steal to her stat line.

Coming up behind her in points was senior guard Ashley Wanninger who recorded 21 points, shot 44 percent from behind the arc, hauled in seven rebounds and was perfect from the free throw line making all five shots.

Freshman forward Leah Schaefer tied Wanninger for most minutes played with 39 and also led the team in rebounds with nine.

As a team, the Musketeers shot a 90 percent from the free throw line, making 18 of their 20 shot attempts.

“Over the last two or three days we’ve become a lot tougher and a lot more mentally focused and that showed up on the defensive end today,” Neal said about the win at Michigan.

In the game against Arkansas-Pine Bluff, Wanninger was the team leader offensively with 17 points, four assists and even added seven rebounds.

Behind Wanninger was Hawkes with 13 points, three assists and seven rebounds.The team received some help off the bench from sophomore guard Aliayh Zantt who put up 10 points, two assists, two steals and two rebounds.

As a team, Xavier shot 74 percent from the free throw line and 31 percent in field goals from the floor. The Xavier women’s basketball team plays Longwood at home on Thursday and then travels to the Virgin Islands to play Duke, Kansas and Central Michigan in the 2013 Paradise Jam.