Women’s College Basketball: St. Francis falls to Olivet
By Tim Tierney For Sun-Times Media January 5, 2013 9:18PM
Updated: February 7, 2013 6:25AM
Katie Gonnering, the leading scorer in the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference, sat at the end of the University of St. Francis bench with her sprained right ankle wrapped in ice as the Fighting Saints battled first-place Olivet Nazarene.
St. Francis trailed 73-69 when Gonnering went down under the basket midway through the second half, and Olivet Nazarene stretched its lead to 97-79 en route to a 101-89 victory Saturday at the Sullivan Center.
“It’s always tough when one of your better players gets hurt,’’ St. Francis coach Samantha Quigley said. “Especially in a game like that because it’s so up-and-down. She’s someone who can really get up and down the floor.’’
Olivet Nazarene (14-2, 10-1) substitutes five players at a time throughout the game and maintains a frantic pace with full-court pressure. St. Francis (8-10, 7-4) finished with 37 turnovers.
“We didn’t take care of the ball like we should have,’’ Quigley said.
“It was really a different style of play, especially for us freshmen,’’ guard Khadija Cooley said. “We’ve never seen anything like it before.’’
The 5-foot-10 Gonnering had 20 points and 14 rebounds before she left the game. Cooley, a Joliet West graduate, also finished with 20 points.
“We saw her go down and we knew we had lost a big part of our team, but we knew we had to give extra,’’ Cooley said.
LaTrece Harris contributed 13 points and 12 rebounds and Paige Stankus had 11 points. Senior starter Ashley Teresiak couldn’t play because of a foot injury.
“I thought we played hard as a team, as a group,’’ Quigley said. “I think that’s all you can ask of your team.’’
St. Francis starts the second half of its conference schedule Tuesday at home against Roosevelt.
“We’re way better than we were since our first game,’’ Cooley said. “The second half of the season you can expect good things from us.’’