Women’s Basketball Moves to 19-0 With 73-26 Win Over Trine University
Saturday, January 28, 2012
By Sports Information Student Assistant Mark DeHaan
Coming off a win in which it topped the century mark for the first time in 17 years, Calvin was looking for another strong game as it played host to Trine Saturday afternoon.
The Knights came into the contest with an 18-0 overall record, 10-0 in conference. Trine was 9-10 overall, 3-7 in the MIAA coming into the game.
The Knights jumped out to an early 8-0 lead on six points by junior Carissa Verkaik, holding the Thunder scoreless for almost the opening four minutes.
After a Trine jumper by freshman Sicily Boyce, great defense by Calvin held the Thunder scoreless for the next three minutes while building the Knights lead to 15-2.
Trine stayed with Calvin over the next few possessions, but then the Knights took control as a 16-0 run put the game out of reach for the Thunder.
In the first half, Trine seemed unable to hit a shot as it opened up the contest 2-for-20 from the field.
Meanwhile, it was the three-point shot that gave Calvin a big lead as they shot 5-for-7 in the opening half. Overall, Calvin shot 62.5% from the field in the first half.
At the break, Calvin held a commanding 41-9 lead as all 15 players logged minutes. Junior Kelsey Irwin was 4-for-5 from behind the arc in the opening half, giving her 12 points at the break. Verkaik also added 12 points at the half.
Early in the second half, it was once again the Calvin defense setting the tone as the Thunder didn’t score for the first five and a half minutes. During that time, Calvin extended their lead to 51-9 on a pair of free throws by Verkaik.
Trine went on a 6-3 run midway through the second half to bring the score to 62-18, but an 11-8 Calvin run finished off the game as the Knights claimed the 73-26 victory.
“I thought we did a nice job defensively, they were without their best player today, and that made a huge difference,” said Head Coach John Ross. “It kind of deflated them right away, but it helped that we got off to a good start, we got some quick scores and dictated the tempo. We knew they were going to come out and play zone and we did some nice things against them early, and it worked out pretty well.”
Leading Calvin on offense was Verkaik with 16 points. She also had four blocks and three rebounds. Irwin added 12 points while junior Julia Hilbrands had 10 points and six boards. The Knights were well-balanced throughout the game as all but one player put points on the board.
“We need more balance. Carissa has been carrying us, but we need to establish a second scorer,” said Ross. “If we want to be good, we have to establish a consistent second scorer, and that’s something we struggle to do. The nice thing is, we have other people who can score, but we really need a second scorer if we want to be really good.”
Leading the Thunder in scoring was junior Aleesha Bullock with six. Four Trine players all added four apiece. Trine shot 7-for-42 in the game, 1-of-9 from three-point range and 11-for-12 from the free throw line.
The win puts Calvin at 19-0, 11-0 in conference while dropping Trine to 9-11 and 3-8 in the MIAA. Next up for the Knights is a trip to Alma on Wednesday for a 6 p.m. contest.