Women’s hoops battles Big East’s top teams
Xavier women’s basketball dropped a pair of games last weekend against Marquette (61-48) and DePaul (97-65), the top two teams in the conference.
Despite starting the game against the Golden Eagles on a 6-0 run, the Musketeers ultimately fell 61-48.
Xavier held Marquette to a lead no bigger than two points during the first half, but the Golden Eagles took control of the game in the second half and closed on a 23-11 run. Against the Blue Demons, Xavier had similar second-half struggles.
Redshirt freshman forward Ayanna Townsend scored a team high 13 points on 6 for 7 shooting. Junior forward and top scorer A’riana Gray added 12 points and a team-high seven rebounds.
Junior guard Aaliyah Dunham contributed 11 points alongside three rebounds and three assists. She also displayed stellar defense with three steals.
Freshman guard Morgan Sharps added six points and six assists with impressive shooting.
On Sunday, the Musketeers squared off against the DePaul Blue Demons, the leaders of the Big East Conference and the No. 13 ranked team in the nation. The first half proved to be contested, with Xavier trailing by five points at halftime.
After a slow start and ceding an 11-0 run to the Blue Demons, Xavier battled back, getting within six points at 17-11.
The second half proved to be an uphill climb, with the Musketeers down by 18 points at the end of the third quarter. DePaul gained the advantage in the fourth quarter, outscoring Xavier 24-9. Xavier committed 26 turnovers to DePaul’s 8 takeaways.
Gray posted an impressive 20-point effort on 9-17 shooting. She stuffed the stat sheet by grabbing nine rebounds, dishing out seven assists and collecting two steals. Sophomore guard Carrie Gross chipped in a career-high 17 points on 6 of 9 shooting. Sharps generated scoring from beyond the arc, knocking down three 3-pointers on 13 points.