The DePaul Women's basketball team was back in action after an eight day layoff following a big loss to Louisville in the Jimmy V Classic. The Blue Demons started a bit slow, but finished with a big fourth quarter to take a 76-67 win over Loyola University, their cross-city rivals.
DePaul led by two after one quarter and one at the half. The Ramblers came out strong in the third quarter to lead 53-48 going into the fourth quarter. DePaul outscored Loyola 29-14 in the final quarter to secure the win.
DePaul's late explosion started at the five minute mark of the fourth quarter. A 15-0 run propelled DePaul to the lead and they never looked back. Sonya Morris) 12 points) and Lexi Held (11 points) were the main sparks of the DePaul comeback, scoring 23 of the team’s 29 points in the fourth quarter.
Morris led all scorers with 26 points. She also added six rebounds. Held had 17 points and Deja Church contributed 15. Only three other Blue Demons got in the scoring column. Dee Bekelja had 8, Darrione Rogers tallied 7 and Kendall Holmes had 3.
For Loyola, Maya Chandler scored 14 to lead the Ramblers. Allison Day with 11 and Ellie Rice with 10 were next, as nine Ramblers scored in the game.
On a personal note, it was cool to see second year guard Sam Galanopolous play. She scored five points with four assists in 32 minutes of play. I am a longtime friend of her family and I had never seen her play at the collegiate level.
DePaul managed to take the win, despite shooting just 36 percent overall, including 18.9 percent from three point territory. DePaul coach Doug Bruno discussed this in the post-game presser, stating good teams find ways to win. DePaul did just that. DePaul won its fifth in a row against the Ramblers in this “Red Line Rivalry” and the 26th in the last 27 games.
In the presser, Coach Bruno, Held and Morris talked about the game, in addition to the long layoff, the uncertainty of the schedule, practices and the city rivalries. All looked forward to the challenge awaiting them Wednesday in the form of Kentucky.
DePaul now stands at 2-2. DePaul's next game is against #9 Kentucky on Wednesday, December 16, at 2 pm CST at Wintrust Arena. This will be DePaul's third game against teams ranked in the top ten.
Go to DePaulBlueDemons.com for more info on the team. Also, check for my coverage here and on GlobalTravelerUSA.com, Patch.com and GlobalWomensSportsRadio.com.