It didn't take the Ashland University women's basketball team long to start setting records in 2019-20.
Beginning the season on Friday (Nov. 8) afternoon at the Midwest Region Crossover in Louisville, Ky., the No. 8-ranked Eagles (1-0) defeated Cedarville (0-1), 97-83. As that was happening, senior guard Renee Stimpert – already Ashland's all-time and single-season assist record-holder – set a new program single-game standard with 17 assists in the victory.
The previous mark of 15 was set by Alyssa Miller at Tiffin on Feb. 23, 2013, and tied by Stimpert on Jan. 19 at home vs. Northwood.
Ashland has defeated Cedarville five consecutive times.
THE MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
- At the 8:18 mark of the opening quarter of the season, Ashland had its first lead at 6-5 on a steal and layup from junior forward Karlee Pireu. Cedarville, however, scored the game's next six points.
- The first media timeout saw the Eagles trailing 13-8, but an 11-4 spurt, capped off by five straight points from senior forward Sara Loomis, gave Ashland a 19-17 lead after the game's first 10 minutes.
- Thanks to scoring the first eight points of the second stanza, Ashland increased its lead to 10 points at 27-17, forcing the Yellow Jackets to call a timeout. Cedarville, however, tied the game at 34 halfway through the second.
- By halftime, the Eagles had a 50-43 advantage, and were shooting 59.5 percent from the field. Cedarville, however, made 55.6 percent from the field and 11-of-13 free throws in the first 20 minutes.
- Senior guard/forward Sarah Hart scored the first four points of the second half to put Ashland up by 11 at 54-43, and Loomis' triple at the top of the key gave the Eagles a 63-48 lead halfway through the third quarter.
- By the end of the third, Ashland led 74-56, and wasn't threatened in the game's final 10 minutes. The only suspense left was if Stimpert would get the single-game assist record by herself, which she did on a 3-pointer by sophomore guard Hallie Heidemann inside of the four-minute mark of the final period.
- Loomis opened her senior campaign with 26 points on 11-of-15 shooting, and 12 rebounds. Going back to the end of last season, in her last three games, Loomis is averaging 26.7 points and 13.3 rebounds per contest. Loomis has 983 career points, as she looks to become Ashland's 23rd 1,000-point scorer.
- Hart finished with a career-high 21 points on 8-of-8 shooting from the field, 2-of-2 from beyond the arc and 3-of-4 from the free-throw line. She also chipped in with seven rebounds and six assists in her first start as an Eagle.
- In her first collegiate game, freshman forward Annie Roshak came off the bench for 18 points on 7-of-11 from the field and 4-of-4 from the line. Pireu made it four Eagles in double-digit scoring with 14 points on 6-of-10 from the field.
- The Eagles boasted a decided 42-23 rebounding advantage, and had 27 assists on 38 made baskets. AU shot 54.3 percent from the field, 44.4 percent from 3-point range and 76.5 percent from the foul line.
- Ashland won its 200th game all-time as a Top-25 team in the coaches' poll. The Eagles are 200-15 (.930) all-time as a ranked squad.
The second game of the season on Saturday (Nov. 9) at 12:30 p.m. in Louisville against Ohio Dominican.