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Crime log: Subject barred after shoplifting at bookstore
By Max Porter, Contributing News Editor • February 26, 2024

Women’s basketball earns commanding win after road skid

Women’s basketball earns commanding home win
Lexi Critchett | Photographer
Mayowa Taiwo directs the defense.

Women’s basketball dismantled Cheyney in dominant fashion in the Smith Center, taking down the Wolves 91-30 to end a four-game skid as the squad gears up for the start of conference play at the end of the month. 

After losing all three of their games at the Discover Puerto Rico Shootout in San Juan, Puerto Rico last week, the Revs were in desperate need of a spark. And they got just that, controlling the game from start to finish en route to a victory that saw 11 players receive significant minutes and four finish in double figures. 

“We’re still trying to figure out those rotations, still want to get more depth on this roster,” Head Coach Caroline McCombs said. “And I think some confidence from today can build into that for our future.” 

The Revs got off to a slow start shooting the ball, missing their first six shots from beyond the arc. Graduate student forward Maren Durant carried the offensive load early on, accounting for the first 9 GW points, 5 of which came from the free throw line where Durant was perfect, hitting all seven of her attempts.

As a team, the Revs were scorching hot at the charity stripe, hitting at an 88.4 percent clip while going a collective 23-26 from the line. McCombs said while the team has struggled from the line this season, getting the opportunities is a priority for the squad. 

“We haven’t gotten there as much as we’ve wanted, and when we’ve gotten there we haven’t knocked them down,” McCombs said. “You’re not guarded at the free throw line, so I don’t know what the difference was today, but we want to build on that.”

On the other end of the floor, the Revs’ defense was stifling from start to finish. After a 3-pointer from guard Taniyah Finney put the score at 4-3 two minutes into the game, the Wolves would not record another made field goal until the 6:45 mark in the second quarter, an 11:23 scoring drought. 

Anchoring the GW defense was graduate student forward Mayowa Taiwo, who finished the game with three steals in addition to eight rebounds. With those eight rebounds, Taiwo moved into a tie for sixth on GW’s all-time rebounding list with 840. 

Thanks in large part to their defense, the Revs finished the half up 34, 44-10. Durant single handedly outscored the Wolves in the first half, posting 11 points to go along with 3 rebounds. 

While defense was the story of the first half for GW, lights out long-range shooting was the story of the second. Led by a 3-point barrage from freshman guard Kamari Sims and junior forward Maxine Engel, the Revs stretched their lead to 56 by the end of the quarter, leading Cheyney 74-18. 

Sims hit five of her 10 3-point attempts on her way to a career-high 15 points. Engel also earned a career high, leading all scorers with 21 points on 7-12 shooting from the field, 1-5 shooting from three and a perfect 6-6 from the free throw line.

“We’ve challenged Kamari all week, even before that,” McCombs said when asked about Sims’ performance. “We know that she can do the things she did today, so we just want to continue to challenge her and motivate her to continue to help out everybody in our program.”

In the fourth quarter, it was more of the same for the Revs as they coasted to a commanding team win. Sophomore forward Caia Loving chalked up the first double-double of her career, collecting 15 points and 10 rebounds as she patrolled the paint on both ends of the floor. 

Loving said McCombs has repeatedly stressed the importance of crashing the glass and getting out on the break to her one-on-one. 

“Coach and I have had conversations and she said ‘Caia I need you to rebound and run’ and I told coach ‘I will do that for you,’” Loving said. 

McCombs and the Revs will look to capitalize on their newfound momentum as they enter the last few weeks of nonconference play. The team travels to Towson, Md., on Wednesday to face off against Towson at 11 a.m. 

Margot Diamond contributed reporting

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