Women’s Basketball Falls to No. 7 Hope (Mich.) in Final Florida Game

Freshman forward Sydney Diedrich (Photo by Steven Schuster)
Freshman forward Sydney Diedrich (Photo by Steven Schuster)

ORLANDO, Fla. – After a two-point loss to the same team just two days ago, the Baldwin Wallace University women's basketball team fell to seventh-ranked Hope (Mich.) College 70-57 in the final game of the RDV Sportsplex D3 Classic.

BW (6-5, 2-2 Ohio Athletic Conference) was led by freshman forward Sydney Diedrich (Chardon/Gilmour Academy) with a career high 12 points. Sophomore guard Riley Schill also scored 12 points while dishing out a career-high seven assists. Junior All-OAC guard Hannah Fecht pulled down five rebounds to lead the Yellow Jackets.

Hope (10-0) was led by freshman guard Kenedy Schoonveld with 22 points while junior All-American forward Francesca Buchanan and junior guard Victoria Swift each contributed 13 points.

BW and Hope matched up just two days ago with the Flying Dutch narrowly emerging victorious 55-53. Both teams struggled from the floor as the Yellow Jackets went 16-for-49 (32.7 percent) and Hope finished 19-for-61 (31.1 percent). Down by 10 entering the final period, BW rattled off a 9-0 run and gave itself a chance to knock off the undefeated Flying Dutch but fell just short.

Hope knocked down three of its first four field goals to begin the rematch while BW struggled to find its offensive rhythm. A layup by junior Academic All-OAC forward Rachel Womeldorf (Lewis Center/Olentangy) with 3:16 remaining sparked the Yellow Jacket offense while a personal 5-0 run by sophomore guard Kasey Hughes (Springboro) helped tie the game at 13-13. One free throw from Buchanan gave Hope a 14-13 lead at the end of the first quarter.

After a scoring frenzy to open the second quarter, both teams' defenses settled into the game. Hope held the Yellow Jackets scoreless from the 7:56 mark to the 3:26 mark, taking a 23-18 lead, while BW kept the Flying Dutch off the scoreboard for just over three minutes, preventing them from extending the lead. However, Hope's offense finally broke through and closed out on a 9-2 run to lead 32-22 at halftime.

BW finally started to knock down some three-pointers from transfer sophomore guard/forward Mary Schentur (Broadview Heights/Brecksville-Broadview Heights), senior Academic All-OAC guard Katie Smith (Fairview Park/Fairview), junior Academic All-OAC guard MacKenzi Matthews (North Royalton) and Diedrich after shooting just 9.0 percent (1-for-11) from beyond the arc in the first half. After trailing by 15 points at the 4:32 mark, the Yellow Jackets cut the Hope lead down to single digits, 43-36, by the end of the third quarter.  

Diedrich drained her second three-pointer of the night to start the final period, extending an 11-0 run that started in the third quarter. Buchanan finally put an end to the run with a layup with 8:53 left in the game and Hope's offense quickly recovered as the Flying Dutch regained a 53-43 lead at the 6:20 mark. Diedrich had the hot hand and hit two more treys in the fourth quarter, bringing BW within five points of Hope with 4:38 remaining, before a personal 10-0 run by Schoonveld put the Flying Dutch back up by 10 points and hung on for a 70-57 victory.

BW will start the new year on the road when the Yellow Jackets return to OAC play against the University of Mount Union down in Alliance on Wednesday, Jan. 3 at 7:30 p.m. inside the McPherson Academic and Athletic Complex.

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