Feb. 3, 2009

By Amy Farnum Novin

GOTTA HAVE HOPE:  Hope College grabbed sole possession of first place in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association standings as the Flying Dutch avenged their only loss of the year with an 84-59 defeat of Saint Mary’s on Jan. 31.

Saint Mary’s was responsible for the lone blemish on Hope’s schedule earlier this year, but the Flying Dutch refused to let it happen again as they extended their home winning streak to 41 games at DeVos Fieldhouse.

Sophomore center Carrie Snikkers turned in a double-double of 21 points and 10 rebounds against Saint Mary’s, adding to her 10 points from the Flying Dutch’s earlier win against Alma last week.  The native of Hudsonville, Mich., collected her second MIAA Player of the Week award for her outstanding play.

No. 4 Hope now moves out of league play for a Top 5 match-up against third-ranked Rochester on Feb. 4.

APPROACHING MILESTONES: Oglethorpe University’s Katie Kulavic garnered Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Player of the Week after playing a key role in two league victories last week, earning a berth in the league tournament.

The senior from Norcross, Ga., averaged 18.5 points and 6.0 assists per game in wins versus Colorado and Austin College.  Kulavic needs just 85 points to become the SCAC’s all-time leading scorer, and currently has 1,760 points in her career.

With their 73-67 win over Austin, the Lady Petrels improved to 12-0 at home, and look to become the first women’s team in school history with a perfect home record with only two regular season home games remaining.

JUMBO JOLT:  Tufts University continued its stellar play with two New England Small College Athletic Conference wins last week as the Jumbos climbed into first place in the league standings.

The Jumbos began the weekend with a 75-63 come-from-behind win over Wesleyan sparked by senior forward Kim Moynihan’s career-best 26 points.  Moynihan came back the next day with 14 points and five rebounds in an 85-67 win over Connecticut College to put the Jumbos in sole possession of first place in the NESCAC standings with a 5-1 mark.

Moynihan was named NESCAC Player of the Week for her efforts, the first Tufts player to earn the award this season.  The native of West Hartford, Conn., averages 10.9 points per game for the No. 15 Jumbos.

NOTABLE:  UW-Stevens Point head coach Shirley Egner recorded her 350th career victory in a 75-49 defeat of UW-River Falls in Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play.  The Pointers have won a school record 14 straight games and are ranked No. 2 in the latest D3hoops.com Top 25 … Denison reeled off its ninth straight victory as the Big Red improved to 10-0 in North Coast Athletic Conference action last week.  Senior Carolyn Simpson poured in a season-high 22 points, while senior Ellen O’Brien dished out four assists in the Big Red’s 83-64 defeat of Hiram on Jan. 31.  O’Brien, who currently has 426 career assists, needs just eight assists to become the school’s all-time leader … Messiah set a school record for the largest margin of victory (65 points) in program history as the Falcons downed Arcadia, 98-33, on Jan. 31 for their 13th straight victory.  The Falcons shot 59.1 percent from the floor in the game … Illinois Wesleyan junior center Christina Solar netted a career-high 27 points and posted 11 rebounds as the top-ranked Titans remained unbeaten with a 65-55 win at North Central on Jan. 30.  She earned her second College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin Player of the Week nod for her stellar play.