Senior forward Hannah Hiland scored a game-high 18 points to help lead the Lake Forest College women's basketball team to a 62-61 triumph over visiting Cornell College on Saturday.
Hiland was efficient on offense, shooting 7-for-11 from the field overall and making three of four attempts from three-point range. She also added six rebounds and a pair of blocked shots in the contest.
Sophomore guard Kelsey Burton and senior forward Hannah O'Day also reached double figures in scoring for the Foresters with 13 and 12 points, respectively. Burton led the team with eight rebounds and chipped in with three assists and three steals. O'Day pulled down six boards as Lake Forest out-rebounded the Rams 44-37. Junior guard Zaria Sydnor led all players in the game with four assists.
In addition to their edge in rebounds, the Foresters also forced 16 turnovers while committing 14. Cornell's .379 field goal percentage was slightly better than Lake Forest's .355 and the visitors connected on nine three-pointers to the Foresters' six. Both team shot less than 60 percent from the line with the home team making 12 and the Rams 8.
Neither team led by more than four points in the first quarter and a pair of free throws by Forester sophomore guard Jaianna Brooks in the closing seconds tied the score at 14. Cornell scored the first six points of the second but Lake Forest responded with the next six. A three-pointer by O'Day with 1:19 remaining gave the home team its largest lead of the game at 28-24 and a three-pointer from the Rams 40 seconds later sent the teams to the locker room at halftime with Lake Forest ahead 28-27.
Cornell opened the third quarter with a 9-0 run but consecutive baskets by Hiland, Sydnor, and Burton cut the deficit to two. The Foresters regained the lead on a jumper by O'Day with two-and-a-half minutes remaining in the period but the Rams pulled back ahead and led 44-40 going into the fourth. A three-pointer by Brooks tied the score at 45 early in the final quarter but Cornell quickly took back the lead and extended it to five points with 7:50 left. Burton knocked down a jumper, senior guard Tiffany Stiewe tied the game on a three-pointer, and the home team grabbed the lead for the first time in the quarter on a three-pointer by Hiland with 4:54 remaining. A traditional three-point play by Hiland broke a 56-56 tie with three minutes to play but the score was soon knotted (60-60) for the 11th time in the game. Burton was fouled and made one of two free throws with 32.2 seconds left and Cornell did the same with 9.5 ticks on the clock to make the score 61-61. Burton drew another foul with 3.9 seconds to play and made the first foul shot but missed the second. The Rams were unable to get a shot off in time and the Foresters finished the opening weekend of Midwest Conference play with a pair of victories.
Lake Forest is now 3-4 overall on the year while Cornell fell to 1-4 (1-1 MWC).
The Foresters will host St. Norbert College in another league game Wednesday evening at 5:30.