Washington’s women open conference slate at Swarthmore

ARLINGTON, Va. – Following a 2-1 start in out-of-league play, Washington’s women’s basketball team will open its Centennial Conference schedule on Tuesday at Swarthmore.

Tip-off is at 6 p.m. for game one of a women’s-men’s doubleheader.

In a preseason poll of CC head coaches, Swarthmore is picked to finish fifth and Washington ninth in the 11-school conference.

Two-time defending champion Gettysburg is favored to three-peat, collecting nine first-place votes and 99 points.

Johns Hopkins, which finished as the Centennial tournament runner-up in 2022-23, earned the other two first-place votes and 91 points.

Dickinson (81 points) was the third choice, followed by Haverford (64), Swarthmore (62) and Muhlenberg (61) as projected playoff teams in fourth through sixth, respectively.

Ursinus (38), McDaniel (36), Washington (33), Franklin & Marshall (30) and Bryn Mawr (10) rounded out the poll. 

The Shore ladies are coming off a 57-48 loss at Marymount on Nov. 21.

A Serena Pluta jumper and an Abby Meredith layup gave Washington a 4-0 lead in the opening minute and a half, but the home team responded with a run of 12 unanswered points.

Symantha Shackelford buried a three to give Marymount (4-2) the lead for good, 7-4,  with 5 minutes, 37 seconds remaining in the opening quarter.

The Saints led by as many as nine points in the first frame (15-6) and 21 in the second quarter (33-12), before taking a 33-17 lead at halftime.

The spread was 53-34 after three quarters.

Washington scored 14 of the final 18 points to make a game of it.

Marymount was kept off the scoreboard for the opening five minutes of the fourth quarter and managed just one field goal, an Ava Achtyl jumper with 4:42 to play, but there wasn’t enough time for Washington to make up the deficit.

The Saints went 15 deep and received scoring from nine players, led by Claire Smith’s 15 points.

Marymount outscored Washington in bench points, 17-4.

Washington junior Karry Kelliher (five rebounds, two blocks) led all players with 16 points in a game high of 37 minutes.

Pluta contributed 12 points.

Meredith and Kaitlyn Boggs (three blocks, three steals, five rebounds) each scored eight points.

NOTE: After three straight games on the road, Washington will return home Thursday, Nov. 30 (7 p.m.) against conference rival Franklin & Marshall.

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