Record-Breaking Victory for the Eagles in Nininger Hall during BC Strong Game
Women’s basketball dominates Washington and Lee for the first time in five years
Bridgewater, Va.- The women’s basketball team pulled off a phenomenal win against the ODAC leading Generals on Feb. 1 for the first time since 2018 in honor of Police Officer John Painter and Safety Officer J.J. Jefferson.
The stands of the Nininger Hall stadium were packed with over 600 Bridgewater supporters dressed for the whiteout theme in honor of the two officers whose lives were taken just a year prior. Before the start of the game, the stadium held a moment of silence to remember the two men for their sacrifice.
“This win means more,” said graduate student guard Erika Nettles. “More than just a win in the stats. It means more for the community. We wanted to give back and show how their lives weren’t in vain.”
From start to finish, the Eagles exploded with energy and determination, which led to the control of all four of the night’s quarters.
The first quarter started off with a bang for the Eagles as first-year guard Riley Corcoran scored the first points of the game with a layup. Followed seconds later with a jump shot by junior guard Abby Freeman, the Eagles took an early 4-0 lead.
Junior post Jaden Alsberry showed off her skills by scoring a jumper just seconds before the shot clock to put the Eagles at a 6-2 lead over the Generals. Alsberry also excelled in rebound numbers, leading the team and gaining eleven for the night.
Bridgewater only let Washington and Lee score two more times in the quarter with aggressive defense, leaving the Eagles to start the second quarter with a 12-6 lead.
“I think we had a great game,” said Alsberry. “We came out with a lot of intensity and played hard on every play which led us to a win. It feels great.”
The Eagles continued to shine into the second quarter even though the Generals took control of the first four baskets. The Eagles pounded back with hook shots, fake outs, impressive passes and jumpers.
Corcoran scored the first basket for the Eagles and maintained their minor lead of 14-11. Corcoran, first-year Jay Garcia, Nettles and senior Jasmyn Pierce all stood out in the quarter with remarkable shooting skills.
Sophomore guard Rosemary Pierson lifted the massive crowd of supporters to their feet when she performed ankle-breaking moves against the Washington and Lee defenders, stepped back and nailed a massive three-pointer in the remaining two seconds of the half.
Pierson’s astounding bucket left the Eagles in a prime position with a towering lead of 27-16 over the Generals to head into halftime.
“The energy and everything right now in the room is awesome to see and hear everyone come together, not only for the game, but for the event itself, and for everything today. I think the girls are playing really well,” said first-year spectator Micah Stine.
Freeman and Alsberry started the third off right for the Eagles with back-to-back jumpers. Branner pushed heavy defense on the Generals, stole a pass between Washington and Lee and had a total of two steals during the BC Strong game, both in the third quarter.
Garcia scored the last points of the third with a staggering jumper and 25 seconds on the clock to make the score 42-30.
“Jay Garcia played huge minutes for us today,” said Assistant Women’s Basketball Coach Christine Mabry. “Washington and Lee has a girl that is going to be contending for rookie of the year, and when Jay was in the game, she definitely played awesome minutes on her.”
Garcia began the final quarter for the Eagles with an easy jumper in the paint. Nettles also showed off her scoring game with multiple successful free throws, with two from a spectacular fast break down the court as a result of a defensive rebound.
Corcoran continued to shine and spun around defenders to result in an impressive hook shot to make the score 48-40 with 3:20 left in the game.
Pierce scored the last two points for the Eagles at the free-throw line and the score rang 52-45 along with the final buzzer.
The fans soared to their feet and the women’s basketball team jumped up and down to celebrate their well-earned victory against the ODAC’s top contenders on a day of remembrance for Bridgewater College.
“We came in knowing we were playing for something bigger than us on Feb. 1. It was a good way to celebrate the day and honor the men. We feel like it brought the community together,” said Alsberry.
After their win against the 12-2 Generals, the 10-4 Eagles are set to take on the Randolph Wildcats on Feb. 8 at 5 p.m. in Nininger Hall for their next ODAC match-up.