Women’s team stays even in conference

By: Brent Raines ~Staff Writer~

Xavier’s women’s basketball team split a pair of home games against Big East rivals this past weekend to put its record at 12-7, 4-4 in conference play and now looks ahead to “The Cure Starts Now” match against Butler.

On Jan. 16 the Musketeers beat Georgetown 63-55 in Cintas Center to extend their home win streak to seven.

Redshirt sophomore Raeshaun Gaffney led the Muskies with 21 points and sophomore Leah Schafer grabbed nine boards. Georgetown (4-15, 2-5) led by as many as 11 points in the first half, a lead which Xavier was able to cut to six by halftime.

The Musketeers then tightened the game in the second half, and the Hoyas held a one-point lead with the minutes left. Two late Georgetown free throws could not bring them back into the game after Xavier put the game away with seven free throws. A couple days later, Villanova (10-8, 5-2) came into Cintas Center and handed the Muskies their second home loss of the season with a decisive 54-34 loss. It was a missed opportunity for Xavier to leave a good impression, as the game was nationally televised on Fox Sports 1.

Gaffney has been a big leader for the Musketeers since joining the team
Gaffney has been a big leader for the Musketeers since joining the team

Villanova led the game wire-to-wire with Xavier’s smallest deficit at 6-5 just six minutes into the game.

The Wildcats led 25-15 at the half, with their largest lead being a 21-point dominance over the Musketeers with nine minutes left in the half.

Xavier shot 25.5 percent from the field and went without a three pointer
for the first time since last year’s 47-26 loss to the Cincinnati Bearcats in the Crosstown Shootout.

The Musketeers will look to rebound next Sunday against the Butler Bulldogs.

The game was designated as “The Cure Starts Now” game by Xavier, which supports the Lauren Hill Tribute Fund of the Cure Starts Now Foundation. The money raised will go to research for DIPG, the brain tumor that is afflicting Hill.

All Big East teams picked one game in which proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to the Lauren Hill Tribute Fund. The game is set to tip-off at 2:30 p.m. on Jan. 25 and will be broadcast nationally on Fox Sports 1.

Tickets are $5, with all proceeds from sales being donated to the cause.