YPSILANTI, Mich. – Behind 19 second-half points from freshman guard Jillian Spurlock, and several other great performances, the Miami University women’s basketball team defeated Eastern Michigan, 71-65, on Sunday. The RedHawks improve to 7-13 on the season and 3-6 in the Mid-American Conference. The Eagles fall to 12-8 overall and 2-7 in the MAC.
After scoring only one point in the first half, Spurlock was unstoppable in the second half. She finished 7-for-8 from the field, including 2-for-3 from behind the arc. For the game she had 20 points, seven rebounds, three assists and a steal in 28 minutes of action.
Junior guard Courtney Larson and sophomore forward Hannah McCue each also put their marks on the contest. Larson found the open player all game, finishing with a career-high nine assists. She also hit two key three-point baskets in the second half to help seal the win. McCue recorded her first career double-double, finishing with 10 points and a career-high 13 rebounds.
A three-pointer from senior guard Hannah Robertson and a basket from senior forward Kelsey Simon gave Miami a 5-0 lead to begin the contest. The Eagles followed with a 6-0 run, but back-to-back buckets by Simon and McCue put the ‘Hawks up, 9-6, with 13:56 left in the half.
Miami’s shot went cold as it was only able to manage six points over the next eight and a half minutes. EMU took advantage to go on a 15-6 run to take a 21-15 lead at the 5:17 mark. Senior guard Haley Robertson ended the RedHawk drought with a three-pointer, while two Simon free throws pulled them to within one.
McCue followed with a three-pointer to give MU the lead back, while a Spurlock free throw and another McCue three pointer made it a 12-0 run and gave the ‘Hawks a 27-21 advantage. Eastern Michigan hit one more bucket to send the game into the half with Miami in front, 27-23.
Miami shot 34.5 percent (10-for-29) during the first half, while holding the Eagles to 29.4 percent (10-for-34) shooting. McCue led the RedHawks with 10 points and eight rebounds during the period.
Spurlock scored three straight buckets early in the second half to help the Red and White build a 39-29 lead with 16:26 remaining in the contest. EMU fought back, going on a 9-2 run to pull within three at 41-38 at the 12:14 mark. Spurlock ended the run with a layup, while Simon was able to score an old-fashioned three-point play to give the RedHawks a 46-38 advantage with 11:15 to go.
Eastern Michigan had one more run in it, closing to within one at 51-50 with 7:37 remaining. Larson responded with the first of her three-point buckets to end the run. Hannah Robertson hit a couple of three-pointers of her own to push Miami’s advantage back to nine at 62-53. After the Eagles answered with a couple of free throws, Larson drained another three-pointer to seal the victory. Spurlock and freshman forward Nicole Anderson hit their free throws down the stretch to secure the 71-65 win for the ‘Hawks.
Simon finished with 13 points and eight rebounds for Miami, while Hannah Robertson had 11 points and six rebounds. In addition to her nine assists, Larson had seven points and five rebounds. The RedHawks shot 43.1 percent (25-for-58) from the field and hit 10 three-point baskets. They held the Eagles to 35.2 percent (25-for-71) shooting. Miami held a 51-36 rebounding advantage for the game.
The RedHawks return home on Thursday to host Toledo for a 7 p.m. game. That game is the final Dollar Days game of the season, and admission is only $1. Tim Bray has the call and it can be seen live on Miami All-Access for those who have a subscription.