‘Golds hunt Hawks: Women’s basketball steals game from Whitewater

The UW-Eau Claire women’s basketball team was able to repeat its win against UW-Whitewater.

This is the second time this year that the Blugolds have faced the Warhawks, and the second time this season they have won against them.

The contest ended with the Blugolds leading the Warhawks 63-55.

Coming off an exciting win against UW-Oshkosh earlier in the week provided momentum for the Blugolds going into the game versus Whitewater.

“We went into the game pretty confident,” senior forward Megan Murphy said. “The game against Oshkosh was a huge win for us.”

Senior forward Vanessa Schley, who leads the Blugolds in points scored on the season, and senior guard Jessie Brantner contributed 13 points each.

“Jessie Brantner had some big shots for us,” Murphy said. “She made some big three-pointers, and she took care of the ball.”

Junior forward Sarah Hughes came off the bench to score 11 points for the Blugolds.

“Sarah Hughes had a really good game for us,” senior guard Meagan Whatley said. “She really stood out. Overall her play was really strong.”

Also contributing to scoring for the Blugolds was sophomore guard Janel Soppeland, who came off the bench to score 10 points for Eau Claire.

The Blugolds led the entire first half with the Warhawks trailing by as few as two points. At the close of the first half, the Blugolds led the Warhawks, 28-20.

In the second half, Whitewater made it a close game. With five minutes left in the game, the Warhawks were trailing by two points.

With only five minutes and seven seconds left in the game, Brantner made a three-point shot that was assisted by sophomore LaToya Banks. This gave the Blugolds a boost and a controlling lead for the remainder of the game. The Warhawks were not able to answer the Blugolds’ rally with the end score of 63-55.

The win places Eau Claire third in the WIAC, two games behind conference leader UW-Oshkosh.

The Blugolds look to improve their 6-3 record 7 p.m. Wednesday in UW-Superior.

“Superior has been struggling this year,” Murphy said. “We’re looking forward to moving up in the conference.”