Courtesy of La Salle Women’s Basketball
On July 1, 2022, the Loyola Chicago Ramblers were officially accepted into the A-10 after years of dominating the Missouri Valley Conference. The Ramblers stated that this move was due to “Loyola’s commitment to the high-level scholastic achievement of all of its students, coupled with its excellent athletic profile, from success in [various sports] to outstanding facilities and resources,” which made the A-10 conference an excellent fit for the school. The Ramblers, however, have failed all season to showcase any form of the same dominance that they exhibited in the Missouri Valley Conference.
On January 22, 2022, the La Salle Explorers Women’s Basketball team faced off against the Ramblers for their 6th game of the new year and first away game of the semester. The Explorers (12-7) were coming off of a 3-game win streak and were looking to continue this streak. On the other hand, the Ramblers (6-12) were coming off of a 4-game losing streak and were looking to end this streak with a win at home.
The game started in favor of the Ramblers, who managed to take an early 7-0 lead over the Explorers. The Explorers, however, would not simply roll over for the home team. Kayla Spruill, Claire Jacobs, and Charity Shears could swish the ball from outside the 3-point line, tying the game at 9-9 with 4 minutes left to play in the first quarter. After a shooting foul from the Ramblers, Senior Claire Jacobs gave the explorers a 10-9 lead after sinking one of her free throws. After the Ramblers went up 13-10, Freshman Mia Jacobs sank her three-pointer, tying the game at 13-12. The Ramblers took an early lead during the second quarter, going 24-20 into the media timeout. The Explorers, however, went on a 10-0 run, giving them a two-point lead heading into halftime. There was a total of four different lead changes in the second quarter.
The half-time break was beneficial for the Explorers, who came out playing as a different team. The Explorers were able to flex their defensive capabilities, holding the Ramblers scoreless for the first 4:34 of the third quarter. At the same time, the Explorers could put up 11 offensive points, further pushing their lead. However, the Explorers went on to commit various defensive fouls, allowing the Ramblers to go 3 for 4 in free throws, bringing the game to 43-31. The Explorers finished the quarter with a 52-37 lead over the Ramblers.
La Salle achieved its highest point difference early in the fourth quarter, with a 16-point lead. The Ramblers, however, refused to go down without a fight, going on their own 7-0 run heading into the media timeout. The Explorers maintained their momentum in the game, going on a 12-5 run to end the game. The Explorers overcame the Ramblers 67-51. Four separate Explorers, Kayla Spruill, Claire Jacobs, Mia Jacobs, and Molly Masciantonio, were able to score at least 10 points, which directly led to their victory over the Ramblers.
Next up, the women’s team will host St Bonaventure for pride day.