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A "Taelor Made" Day

12/14/2013 – The women's basketball team was victorious in a double overtime thriller with their guests from Northwestern Ohio. The 95-89 victory improved the Saints record to 11-1 overall and to 6-1 in the WHAC, while the Racers fell to 7-5 on the season and to 4-3 in league play. The Saints remain in a three-way tie for first in the WHAC standings with Davenport and Indiana Tech.

A "good" game was expected at the Sturrus Sports & Fitness Center between two of the WHAC upper echelon programs. The fans who made the trek through the wintry weather were not subjected to that anticipated "good" game, but rather a great game in which neither team deserved to lose. Aquinas' fifth year senior Taelor Sanders willed the Saints to the double overtime victory.

The Saints sprinted out to a 20-7 advantage eight minutes into the contest. The early deficit did not phase the Racers as they rattled off 20 of the games next 26 points to take a one point lead with 4:48 to play in the half. The remainder of the half see-sawed back and forth with the Saints nursing a 37-33 at the break.

A quick 10-3 ambush to start the second half enabled the Saints to forge ahead by eleven points. The double-digit cushion was in tact over the next five minutes before the Racers slowly crept back into contention. A 25-11 surge by Northwestern Ohio over a ten minute span allowed the Racers to take a 73-70 lead with 1:31 remaining on the clock. A pair of free throw conversions by UNOH's Morgan Cnudde kept the lead at 75-71 entering the half's final 30 seconds. A quartet of Taelor Sanders free throw makes and some solid defense tied the game at 75 and forced the game into overtime.

The first overtime came and went. The only thing decided by those five minutes would be that a second five minute overtime session would be in order. The final five minutes saw the Saints convert three huge three point attempts. Kelsey Spitzley, Marissa Marx and Sanders hit consecutive baskets from beyond the arc to give the Saints some breathing room at 91-86. The Racers would trim the lead to two points, but defense and free throw shooting salted the game away for Aquinas.

The Saints attack was keyed by the career high, 32 point performance by Taelor Sanders. During the game Sanders moved into 14th place on the Saints all-time scoring list. Taelor's 1,179 points moved her ahead of Cheryl Carpenter (1,171) and Claire Hogan (1,152). Allison Heberlein played Robin as she chipped in with 20 points, five rebounds and five assists. Chelsea Matley also played a vital role in the victory tallying a double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds.

The Saints now have a chance to catch their breath before returning to the court next Saturday at Purdue-Calumet (8-3).

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