Ashley Timmerman (Pontiac, Ill./Pontiac
H.S.) made five three-pointers for her team-high 15 points but Valparaiso
could not overcome a cold shooting night from the floor and fell 63-42 to UIC
on Thursday evening at the UIC Pavilion in Chicago, Ill.
Valpo shot just 29.8% from
the floor for the night though, making just seven shots inside the three-point
“Obviously we struggled to
score points,” head coach Keith Freeman
said. “We didn’t put the pressure on
them. They only committed five fouls and
we only shot one free throw. We need a
method of scoring around the basket.”
With the game tied early, UIC
went on the game’s first run. A 12-2
spurt, capped by six straight points by Cree Nix, put the Flames on top 17-8 at
the 11:06 mark.
The Crusaders struggled from
the floor to start the game, making just four of their first 18 shots over the
first 12 minutes of the half. A
three-pointer by Erin Higgins, her second of the game, put UIC up 23-13 at the
7:09 mark as the Flames made their first four shots from long range.
Valpo then began to fight
back. A triple by Timmerman pulled the
Crusaders within six and Kelly Watts
(Gary, Ind./East Chicago Central
H.S.) had a put back basket to make it 23-19.
Her offensive board was Valpo’s seventh of the first 16 minutes.
Timmerman capped a 9-0
Crusaders run with her third triple to make it 23-22 at the two minute mark.
“We got open shots for
awhile, but never got the balance of scoring inside,” Freeman added.
UIC capped the first half
with the final five points, including a layup by Nix with one second to play,
giving the hosts a 28-22 lead at the break.
Valpo shot just 26.7% in the
first half, but nine offensive rebounds resulted in 10 second chance points to
keep the Crusaders close at the break.
UIC scored seven of the first
10 points out of the break to increase the lead to 10 before back-to-back
triples by Betsy Adams (Monticello, Ind./Twin Lakes H.S.) and Timmerman pulled the Brown and
Gold within 35-31 at the 13:30 mark.
The Crusaders then went
scoreless for the next five minutes as the Flames scored 11 straight points to
push the advantage to 46-31 before Timmerman’s fifth three of the night ended
the drought with 8:30 to play.
Eight more unanswered by UIC
pushed the lead to 20 with just over four minutes to play to put the game out
UIC shot 56% from the floor
in the second half to finish shooting at a 48.1% clip.
Timmerman led Valpo in
scoring as the only Crusader in double figures while Tabitha Gerardot (Fort
H.S.) added seven points. Laura Richards (Connersville, Ind./Connersville
H.S.) had a team-high seven rebounds, all in the first half.
“We have a lot of situations
with this team where we don’t make the obvious play,” Freeman concluded. “We make it more difficult than it needs to
be. We did have some kids that really
played hard though and I’m proud of that.”
Jasmine Bailey led UIC (8-9,
3-3 Horizon) with 15 points and seven rebounds while Briana Hinkle added 11
points. Nix finished with 10 points for
Valparaiso (3-15, 0-6) will wrap up its two-game road swing in Chicago with a trip to
Loyola on Saturday afternoon. Tip-off at
the Gentile Center is set for 12:30 p.m.
Game Notes: Timmerman’s
five triples tied a career high at Valpo … the
15 points marked her third highest scoring night as a Crusader … Valpo
attempted 32 three-point field goals, tied for sixth most in a single game in
school history … the Crusaders scored just 10 points in the paint … Valpo leads
the all-time series 19-14 but UIC holds a 9-7 advantage in Chicago.