FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Dan Donohue, Assistant Athletic Director for Sports Information, 610-606-4666 x. 3725
SUNDERHAUS RULES THE ROOST: FALCON JUNIOR CENTER SCORES 1000th POINT IN LOSS TO GWYNEDD-MERCY
Allentown, PA (January 22, 2011) - Except for the final score, it all came together beautifully for Cedar Crest's Lizzy Sunderhaus (Hamilton, OH/Stephen T. Badin) on Saturday.
The junior center entered Saturday's game against CSAC powerhouse Gwynedd-Mercy College needing just 21 points to reach her 1000th, which was a hair more than her NCAA 13th-ranked season average of 20.3 points per game. Having just celebrated her birthday, her parents had made the long trek from Ohio to see her play, possibly for the final time this season. And on Monday, Cedar Crest plays on the road, where a 1000th point would provoke a much more subdued celebration than at home surrounded by fans and family. So with a "now or never" attitude and some help from her teammates, Sunderhaus reached her milestone on Saturday with a 24-point, 12-rebound, 7-assist game, her 13th consecutive double double of the season.
Not that it was a foregone conclusion - Sunderhaus struggled under the Griffins' double- and often triple-coverage and managed just six first-half points. The Falcons kept within a reasonable distance of Gwynedd-Mercy for the first twenty minutes and went into halftime down just 46-33, largely on the hot hand of senior Leann Wallower (Havertown, PA/Haverford) who knocked down 12 before the break. Sophomore point guard Megan DeMutis (Norristown, PA/Kennedy-Kenrick) also had a fantastic first half, with no turnovers despite the Griffins' considerable ball pressure, and eight points including two big baskets from beyond the arc. Wallower finished with 17, and DeMutis had a career-high 11.
Halftime afforded nervous Falcon fans time to wonder whether Sunderhaus was up to the task of 15 second half points. Despite Gwynedd-Mercy's considerable advantage in depth (they played 14 to Cedar Crest's seven), the Falcons continued to hang around, keeping the margin in the 12 to 14 point area. It wasn't until the Griffins scored on three quick possessions, including two three-pointers, with about 10:00 to go that they broke the game open en route to the 92-66 final score. But Sunderhaus would not disappoint, scoring her 1000th point on a jumper from the top of the lane off a nice feed by DeMutis with 4:28 remaining. One big difference that helped Sunderhaus reach her goal in the second half was her ability to get to the line - after attempting no free throws in the first half, she was a perfect 10-for-10 in the second.
Cedar Crest head coach Valerie Donohue described the game as an all-around great effort by every one of her players, including strong showings by seniors Lauren Seale (Wilmington, DE/Wilmington Christian) who helped with ball-handling duties, and Kelley Cipriani (Medford, NJ/Shawnee) who had a strong defensive game to go along with five points and five boards. Freshman Amber Wehry (Klingerstown, PA/Tri-Valley) also had a great game, providing great defense and ball handling along with nine points and three assists.
Cedar Crest drops to 5-9 overall and 1-7 in the CSAC. Gwynedd-Mercy improves to 9-5 overall and 5-1 in the conference. The Falcons next travel to Hackettstown on Monday, January 24th, for a rematch with CSAC rival Centenary. Game time is 7:00 p.m. and it will be carried live on www.pennatlantic.com.