DOMINIC HOSCHER | Reporter
In a battle between the number two and three teams in the MIAA, the Lindenwood Lions women’s basketball team prevailed over Washburn in record-breaking fashion to jump to second in conference standings.
Lindenwood, as a team, went 14-23 and shot 60.9% from three-point range, which are Lions records in both three pointers made and percentage.
The first half saw two of the top three teams in the MIAA go back-and-forth, with the Ichabods getting off to the faster start. Washburn stood their ground defensively early, holding the Lions to a field goal percentage around 30% at one point in the first quarter. At the end of one, the Ichabods had a 24-20 lead.
This would be the last lead Washburn would have at the end of a quarter for the remainder of the game.
Lindenwood’s defense was the story of the second quarter, holding the Ichabods to just 10 points that quarter. While the defense limited the Washburn offense, the Lions’ record-setting day from beyond the arc began. Lindenwood went 7-14 on three-pointers in the first half, while going 42% from the field.
Their high percentages would see the Lions take a 37-34 lead at the half. Lexie Moe led the way at the break with seven points and was 2-5 on three-pointers. Nine of the 10 Lions to appear in the first half had at least two points at the end of the first. Washburn’s Hunter Bentley led the way on the other end with a team-high 10 points.
Head Coach Katie Falco’s squad began to pull away starting in the third, where their offense proved to be too much for the Ichabods to handle. Lindenwood tallied 26 third quarter points, their largest tally of the game. Kallie Bildner got the party started with a three just over a minute into the half. Lindenwood would end up going on a 10-2 run that was capped off by a Jade Giron long range make.
The Lions drained four threes in the third quarter to put the hosts ahead at 63-55 heading into the fourth quarter. In the fourth, the Ichabods went on an early run to cut Lindenwood’s lead down to just four points, but it was all Lions after that. After a few Charisse Williams jumpers, Devin Fuhring and Medlen would hit back-to-back threes to give Lindenwood a sizable 13-point lead.
Moe finished off Lindenwood’s historic day from downtown with her third three of the evening with 2:14 left in the contest. After two Bildner free throws, the Lions would end up taking home the 83-65 win. It was the second game in a row in which Lindenwood scored 80+ points, and the eighth time this season.
The 14 three-pointers made are the most in a single game in Lindenwood NCAA history, while their 60.9% three-point percentage is also the best in the team’s NCAA history. Medlen topped the box score, going 3-4 on her long range efforts and tallying 17 points. Moe finished with 12 points, while Bildner had 15 points and 8 rebounds. Fuhring had 14 points and went 5-5 from the field.
Now as the second place team in the MIAA, the Lions go into their final two regular season games with a record of 19-5, and are 13-4 in conference play. Those games will both be at home, and will both be against teams Lindenwood lost to earlier in the year: Central Missouri and Southwest Baptist.