WASHINGTON, DC -- Visiting Washington College snapped host Catholic University's nine-game winning streak with a 65-61 win over the Cardinals in the championship game of the Catholic University Holiday Tournament this afternoon in Washington, DC. It was the Shorewomen's (6-4) second road win over the Cardinals (9-2) this season. Washington handed Catholic a 48-46 setback, previously the Cardinals' only loss, in the season opener for both teams on November 15th.
In today's game, Catholic held a 34-28 lead at halftime after forcing 10 Washington turnovers in the first half. The Shorewomen tied the score at 46-46 on a three-pointer by senior guard Sally O'Donnell (Cape May Court House, NJ/Wildwood Catholic) with 11:15 remaining in the second half. Catholic answered with an 8-0 run, capped off by an Emily Grabiak three-pointer with 9:14 to go to take a 54-46 lead.
The Shorewomen then ran off nine straight points as O'Donnell banked in a three-pointer with 7:03 remaining to give Washington a 55-54 lead and sophomore guard Kelly Mitchell (Laurel, MD/Academy of the Holy Cross) added a free throw with 6:35 left to push the lead to two points.
Catholic scored five of the next six points to regain the lead, 59-57, on a Rachel Ferri three with 5:33 to go. Senior guard Meghan Tait (Oxford, PA/Oxford Area) made two free throw for Washington with 4:46 remaining and sophomore forward/center Latisha Pledger (Chesapeake, VA/Indian River) converted a lay-up with 3:25 to go to put the Shorewomen back in front, 61-59. Grabiak made a pair of free throws to even the score for the Cardinals with 2:17 to go, but Catholic's final four possessions resulted in three missed shots and a turnover. O'Donnell knocked down a long two-pointer with 1:26 to give Washington the lead for good at 63-61. Tait sealed the win with a pair of free throws with 15.7 seconds to play.
Pledger was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player. She finished with 15 points and eight rebounds in today's game after scoring 15 points and collecting 15 boards in yesterday's 74-63 win over St. John Fisher. Junior center Erin Kile(Benton, PA/Benton) joined Pledger on the All-Tournament Team; she scored 11 points and brought down 12 rebounds, including 11 on the offensive end, in today's win.
O'Donnell led the Shorewomen in scoring with 16 points against Catholic, knocking down four of her seven three-point attempts. She also dished out a game-best five assists. Tait finished with 10 points and seven rebounds.
Catholic's Jill Woerner, who represented the Cardinals on the All-Tournament Team, scored a game-high 18 points. Holly Janicki added nine points off the Catholic bench.
The Shorewomen, who have now won four consecutive games, finish their non-conference schedule with a perfect 5-0 record. They will look to improve upon their 1-4 Centennial Conference record this season when they travel to Franklin & Marshall for a 6:00 p.m. game on Wednesday.