Without some of its usual offensive firepower, the Hillsdale College women's basketball team was going to need points from some diverse sources in Thursday night's G-MAC game against Kentucky Wesleyan.
Thanks to career-high scoring nights from senior Maddy Reed and freshman Jaycie Burger, along with an incredible rebounding advantage, the Chargers knocked off the Panthers 83-58 at the Dawn Tibbetts Potter Arena. The win makes Hillsdale 11-7 overall and 9-5 in the G-MAC and completes a season sweep of KWC.
It was a complete effort for the Chargers, who outscored the Panthers in all four quarters, held the visitors to 30.8 percent shooting from the field and outrebounded them by an astonishing margin of 58-24. It's difficult to overstate how rare it is for one team to outrebound another by 34 in a single game, but that's what Hillsdale – the conference leader in rebounding margin – did on this night.
But when it came to shots that didn't require a rebound – that is, shots that went in – Reed, Burger and junior Makenna Ott proved adept at that as well.
Reed in particular was aggressive in looking for her offense early in the game. By halftime, she had already exceeded her previous career high of 18 with 19 points, going 5-for-6 from the field and 6-for-6 from the free throw line. In the win, Reed connected on three 3-point field goals and finished 7-for-9 from the floor, a career-best .778 field goal percentage.
Ott did a little of everything and did everything well in this win. She often took the ball upcourt against the Panthers' steady pressure, crashed the boards (6 rebounds), dished out 3 assists, and shot 7-for-12 from the floor, good for 17 points. She played her usual smart and steady game for the Chargers.
Burger, making her second home collegiate start, missed her first four shots from the floor, but showed maturity and persistence in continuing to look for her shot and it paid off. She made a career-high four 3-point shots on her way to a season-high of 15 points for Hillsdale. She played a key role in the third quarter, making three of her shots from downtown. She also matched her career-high with 6 rebounds, all coming on the defensive end.
Senior center Allie Dittmer led Hillsdale's dominance on the boards with 12. Both Dittmer and Reed each grabbed 5 offensive rebounds, while sophomore Bree Porter came off the bench to record 4 points, 5 rebounds and 4 blocked shots in 22 solid minutes of play.