In order to earn their spot in the Great Lakes Valley Conference Tournament, the University of Indianapolis women’s basketball team is focused on getting their rankings up and getting back to the basics. Despite the current losses, the women still have a chance to earn their way back into the top eight, and qualify for the tournament.
The women suffered a loss to William Jewell despite a late fourth quarter comeback. Going into the fourth quarter down by 16 points, the Hounds rallied a 19-3 run minutes before time ran out. UIndy was within two points of the Cardinals, but did not pull ahead, ending with a loss of 74-66.
Freshman guard Taylor Drury ended the game with a career high of 25 points, while racking up five three-point shots. Senior guard Martha Burse was right behind Drury with 20 points on the day, and collaborated with her to shoot 20 of the 25 of the Hounds points in the fourth quarter.
Earlier in the week, the team pulled away with a road win against Missouri S&T, 72-65.
Sophomore guard Claire Carlton earned her first double-double against the Miners with 20 points and 11 rebounds. Senior guard Martha Burse continued her 20 plus points a game streak, scoring 23 points.
Going into the half the Hounds had a 16 point lead that grew into a 21 point lead by the third quarter. Missouri S&T quickly fought back and went on a 13-0 scoring run, but a pair of three pointers made by senior guard Devin Ferguson and Carlton put the Hounds back on the scoreboard, sending them to their first win in three weeks.
On Feb. 8 the team faced the University Missouri St. Louis Tritons. The Hounds held the lead during the first five minutes of the first quarter, but struggled to regain it as the game progressed. Drury collected 13 of the her 25 points during the second quarter. Senior guard Martha Burse added 23 points, along with grabbing seven rebounds, four steals and two assists. The team had a season high field goal percentage at 48.1 percent.
The Hounds trailed closely until late in the third quarter where USML put up 13 points. The Tritons came away with a 79-63 win over the Hounds.
With the recent losses the Hounds have fallen in the GLVC rankings. The team dropped from an eighth ranking to tenth, with University of Illinois Springfield falling closely behind them. Head Women’s Basketball Coach Kristen Wodrich said the team is focusing on fundamentals as they try to get the team’s ranking back up.
“We’re just trusting the process and working defensively and how to guard better players,” Wodrich said. “You’ve just got to win one game at a time. You can’t move up unless you win and that’s our focus right now.”
Along with working on defensive skills, Burse added that their communication could be stronger.
“We’ve improved our communication a little bit,” Burse said. “It could be better.”
The team is also focusing on recuperating and preventing further injuries. The Hounds currently have seven players in their normal rotation.
“It’s always hard when there are injuries throughout the year,” Wodrich said. “You have a lineup and then you have to switch it. he team has been really resilient with that and flexible. It’s hard though because we lost our point guard and throughout the season we’ve lost the depth of our bench. We’ve had to switch our practices up and making sure we’re taking care of the players legs and making sure they’re in shape for the game.”
The Hounds will travel to Louisville, Ky. on Feb. 22 to battle the Bellarmine University Knights. Tip off will be at 5:30 p.m.