To say the Miami University women’s basketball team has been on a roll lately could be seen as an understatement with the way the team has been winning.
With a convincing 73-55 victory over Kent State University Wednesday night, the RedHawks continued their winning ways and saw their record move to 13-3 and 3-0 in the Mid-American Conference.
“We’re starting to put more minutes together,” Head Coach Maria Fantanarosa said. “We’ve been focused on our defense and rebounding to keep us in games, and today I felt our offense executed better than any other game this year.”
The ‘Hawks took the lead right out of the gate with a jumper by senior guard Maggie Boyer, who would pour in 17 total points on the night, 15 of those coming from three-point territory.
Before the Golden Flashes could say “What happened?” Miami was up by eight 14-6 after just four minutes of play.
After a 10-0 run to go up 24-8 with 10 minutes left to play in the first half, the Kent State faithful had to know that their team was in for a long night.
The Golden Flashes were able to get back into the game with a little run of their own, scoring seven unanswered points and cutting the deficit down to 12 at 29-17.
However, the RedHawks did not let them get any closer and took a 38-23 lead into the locker room at halftime.
Boyer led the way in the first half with 14 points, hitting four three-pointers. She combined with junior forward Kirsten Olowinski and junior guard Courtney Osborn, who had 13 and 11 points respectively, for all 38 of the RedHawks’ first half points.
“I was just taking what the defense was giving to me and was able to take advantage of those looks,” Boyer said. “We also got stops on defense and that was able to open things up.”
Miami came out in the second half bent on preventing the Golden Flashes from thinking about a comeback. Olowinski hit a three to start things off and the ‘Hawks pushed the lead to 51-29 with 14:52 to play on another three-pointer from Boyer.
But just when it seemed that Kent State should start warming up the buses for a long ride home, the RedHawks’ shots went cold and the Golden Flashes were back within 11 at 64-53 with just under three minutes to play.
However, clutch shooting by junior forward Rachel Hencke, who scored seven of the team’s last nine points, was enough to shut the door and run Miami’s win streak to nine in a row.
Osborn led all scorers with 20 points and Olowinski added 18 of her own to go along with nine rebounds. Those two along with Boyer have given Miami scoring options that many teams have been hard-pressed to stop.
“If Maggie, Kirsten and Courtney have games like that all year, we’ll win a lot of games,” Fantanarosa said.
The RedHawks next travel to Athens, Ohio to take on the Ohio University Bobcats in the “Battle of the Bricks.” Tip-off is 2 p.m. Sunday.
“I think the biggest thing to bring to the next few games is energy,” Boyer said. “Continuing to rebound and play good defense is going to help us win games.”