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Hilltop Views

The Student News Site of St. Edward's University

Hilltop Views

The Student News Site of St. Edward's University

Hilltop Views

GAME DAY: Women’s basketball falls short 74-92 to TAMIU on National Women in Sports Day

Ruffus-Milner+shows+dominance+in+the+paint%2C+forcing+contact+against+the+Dustdevils+pressuring+defense.+She+was+responsible+for+six+of+the+Hilltoppers+22+points+in+the+first+quarter+and+was+persistent+both+defensively+and+offensively%2C+accounting+for+four+total+rebounds.
Emilio Casanova / Hilltop Views
Ruffus-Milner shows dominance in the paint, forcing contact against the Dustdevils’ pressuring defense. She was responsible for six of the Hilltoppers’ 22 points in the first quarter and was persistent both defensively and offensively, accounting for four total rebounds.

Despite great efforts in the paint, the St. Edward’s University’s women’s basketball team fell short to Texas A&M-International University on Feb. 3 with a 74-92 final score.

Before the jump ball, Associate Vice President of the Athletics Department Debbie Taylor announced the J.J. Riehl Endowment — an anonymous $25,000 donation to the women’s basketball program. 

Alum and women’s basketball head coach J.J. Riehl graduated from St. Edward’s in 2002 and got her masters in 2004. She was a starter on the team for three years and scored over 1,000 career points. She joined the team as an assistant coach after graduating and became head coach in 2012 and currently holds the record of 156 wins. 

“(St. Edward’s is) my home, it embodies everything I believe in and value as a human being,” coach Riehl said. “Somebody believed enough in me to make that donation and to name it after me and I don’t think that anyone ever thinks that something like that will happen to them, so I think it’s a very humbling thing and it’s just a reminder to continue to do things the right way.”

The Hilltoppers were consistent through the entire game, showing up at the paint — both offensively and defensively — coming to a total of 30 rebounds. Graduate forward Jayda Ruffus-Milner showed her offensive skills, scoring six out of the 22 points in the first quarter and being responsible for four rebounds. Ruffus-Milner finished the game with 12 points. Despite their efforts, the Dustdevils did not surrender their lead, and the players went to the locker room with a score of 54-37. 

At halftime, Dr. Emma Lou Linn, a pioneer in women’s sports, was honored by the SEU Athletics staff. She was one of the individuals responsible for creating the women’s basketball program at St. Edward’s and was an assistant coach when the program started. She was inducted to the St. Edward’s Hall of Fame in 2016.

Coming from the bench, sophomore forward Mikah Chapman helped apply pressure to the Dustdevils, with six total points and five total rebounds. Also from the bench, and starting the last quarter, junior guard Isabel Langenberg was the highest scorer on the team, with a total of 15 points, shooting 3-5 from the three-point line. 

The Dustdevils, however, answered quickly after every shot from the Hilltoppers. Forward Raiana Brown scored a total of 32 points, going 11-for-13 from the free-throw line. The opponents had a 16-point run and maintained a 33-point lead. 

“If we scored 74 points we should be in a very competitive game, so our offense was okay but our defense wasn’t,” coach Riehl said. “So I think it’s just continuing to fight to find that level of consistency.”

The Hilloppers currently hold a 7-13 overall record, and a 4-10 Lone Star Conference record. They go on the road to face Texas Woman’s University on Thursday, Feb. 8, and University of Texas at Tyler on Saturday, Feb. 10.

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Anna Pratts, Sports Editor
Anna Pratts is a sophomore from Brazil and majoring in Writing and Rhetoric with a concentration in journalism and digital media and minoring in Global Studies. This is her second year writing for Hilltop Views and her first semester as Sports Editor. She loves writing about sports, especially soccer and basketball, but she is looking forward to exploring other areas and growing as a writer.

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