Xavier wins Lauren Hill Tipoff, beats Wake Forest

Newswire photo by Desmond Fischer | Junior guard Tee Owens turned in a quality performance against Fairfield in the annual Lauren Hill Tipoff Classic at Cintas Center on Nov. 17. She scored in double digits with 11 points while distributing five assists.

The women’s basketball team continued its fast start to the season, picking up two victories against Fairfield and Wake Forest last week. After the pair of wins, the team is 4-1 on the year.

Xavier played Fairfield as part of the Lauren Hill Tipoff Classic in Cintas, and won 48-35. The team got out to a quick start, controlling an 11-2 lead after the first quarter.
The Musketeers maintained the lead the rest of the way, despite the teams being close to even in the remaining three quarters.

Fairfield trailed by only nine, 23-14, at halftime. Xavier stretched the lead after halftime though, winning the third quarter 14-11 and the fourth quarter 11-10. The final score favored Xavier, 48-35.

The 35 points for Fairfield were the fewest for a Xavier women’s basketball opponent since Southeastern Louisiana only scored 27 on Nov. 25, 2015. Xavier won that game 67-27.

Sophomore forward A’riana Gray led the team in scoring with 14 points, and also grabbed a new career-high in rebounds with 14. Junior guard Tee Owens also scored in double figures, as did freshman Lauren Wasylson, who scored 11 points each.

Freshman guard Maddy Johnson and sophomore forward Deja Ross were second on the team with four rebounds apiece.

After the Fairfield win, the team traveled to Winston-Salem, N.C., to take on the Wake Forest Demon Deacons.

The Musketeers got off to a slow start, scoring only nine points in the first quarter. Wake Forest managed to win the first quarter as a result, 14-9. Xavier picked things up in the second quarter, scoring 17 points while holding Wake Forest to only 12. The score was deadlocked at 26 points apiece heading into halftime.

The Musketeers kept the momentum going into the third quarter, seizing control and outscoring Wake Forest 23-15 to carry a 49-41 advantage into the fourth quarter.
Xavier closed the game strong. It outscored Wake Forest 13-9 in the final quarter to seal a 12-point, 62-50 road win.

Gray once again led the team in scoring and rebounding, getting 17 points and six rebounds, in addition to three steals.

Wasylson had another strong performance against Wake Forest, posting a career high in scoring with 16 points.

In addition to her scoring, she also had three rebounds and two steals, as well as four three-pointers.

Sophomore guard Aaliyah Dunham also scored in double-figures with 13 points. She also had five assists.

Up next, Xavier takes on Bowling Green at home on Thursday at 11:30 a.m.
After Bowling Green, the Musketeers take on North Alabama on Sunday at 2 p.m.

By: Donnie Menke | Staff Writer