Hot Third Quarter Propels Washington Past Rochester

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. – University Athletic Association leader Washington University-St. Louis blistered the nets with 61% shooting in the third quarter to take command in a 61-53 victory over the University of Rochester at the Louis Alexander Palestra on Sunday afternoon.

The Bears sank 11 of 18 floor shots (61.1%) including three of four outside the arc. Rochester shot a credible 41% (7-17), but the Washington pinpoint shooting helped the Bears outscore Rochester, 26-16, and take a 51-43 lead heading into the fourth quarter.

Rachael Sondag scored 13 of her 17 points in the third period. She hit all three of her three-point attempts and was 5-5 from the floor overall. Madeline Homoly scored four points in the third. She led Washington with 19 points overall, 10 rebounds, one block, and three steals. Sondag finished the afternoon with four three-pointers.

Rochester's scoring leaders were Tessa Ludwick with 13 points and Lena Ethington with 10 points and nine rebounds. Ludwick sank three of seven outside the arc. This was her fourth straight game in double figures. She added three assists and one steal. Shannon Loiseau had nine points, six rebounds, and four blocked shots. She has 54 blocks in 21 games. That ties her with Kelly Connors for #2 on the single-season block list. The leader has 81 blocks. 

This was Senior Day for the Yellowjackets. Ethington and Emma Michaels were honored in pre-game ceremonies. Michaels, in her first varsity start, had seven points – including a three-pointer – four rebounds, and two assists. Brenna James scored six points, had five rebounds, and three assists.

Rochester led by five (14-9) after one. With UR up, 19-13, in the second quarter, James sank a three-pointer to ignite an 8-4 run that got the lead to 27-17. Ethington hit a perimeter jumper and Jamie Boeheim closed the burst with a three-pointer. Rochester sank 9 of 20 outside the three-point line with six players contributing.

Washington scored the last eight points of the quarter to draw within 27-25 at intermission. Sondag hit a three-pointer to open the third quarter and put the Bears back in front. It began a 12-2 run over the first three and a half minutes. Rochester narrowed it to as close as five, 53-48, on Ludwig's three-pointer midway through the fourth quarter. 

The win boosts Washington's record to 10-1 UAA, 16-6 overall. The Bears are ranked No. 21 by the Women's Basketball Coaches Association. They are among Others Receiving Votes in the media poll. Washington leads Chicago (9-2/18-4) by one game n the UAA race. Emory is three games back (7-4 UAA, 16-6).

Rochester is 3-8 in the UAA, 9-13 overall. The Yellowjackets are tied with Brandeis for sixth place in the standings. Rochester plays its last three UAA games on the road – at Carnegie Mellon on February 15, at Case Western Reserve on February 17, and at Emory on February 23.