Women's Basketball Suffers First Setback at Stevens, 54-42

Sierra Berkel
Sierra Berkel

HOBOKEN, N.J. – Playing its first game outside of the state of Pennsylvania this season, the Haverford Women's Basketball team was bested by host Stevens, falling 54-42 in the first setback of the season for the squad. Senior co-captain Sierra Berkel came off the bench to set a new career high with 24 points while adding nine rebounds. Haverford falls to 6-1 on the season while Stevens is now 2-4 after the non-conference excursion for both programs.

The Fords came out with a strong defensive approach, limiting the Ducks to just six points in the opening quarter. After Stevens pulled ahead 6-2 with seven minutes remaining in the quarter, the Fords held Stevens off the scoreboard until the 7:56 mark of the second. 

Berkel began to take over the contest in the second stanza, pouring in back-to-back buckets as the Fords took a 12-10 lead with 5:51 remaining in the opening half. Berkel single-handedly provided a 7-0 run for Haverford, finishing a three-point play as the Fords went ahead 15-10 with 5:18 left. A Berkel layup made the score 19-12 Haverford and Julianna Clark delivered a big three-pointer to hand the Fords a 22-15 lead with 2:11 left in the half. Daphne Ginn hit one from beyond the arc in the final minute, but Haverford took a four point lead into the intermission.

Stevens began the third quarter on a 13-0 run, taking a 33-24 lead with 5:49 left in the third quarter. The Fords were forced to regroup, and relied again on Berkel to lead the way. After Katie Cook made two from the free throw line, Berkel made a layup and finished a three-point play at the line. Another three-point play with 4:01 remaining cut the Stevens lead to just one at 33-32 as the Fords successfully turned the tide on the Ducks, stealing momentum back.

After Stevens regained a four point cushion, Berkel again finished a three-point play as Haverford trailed 36-35 at the end of three. Macy Goldbach began the fourth quarter scoring with a trey, giving Haverford back the lead at 38-36.

Unfortunately for the visitors, the lead would be the last of the contest as Stevens unleashed a 15-2 run to take a 49-40 lead with 4:26 left in the game. The impressive stretch for the hosts included success from long range as Sydney Darby, Erica Guketlov and and Alison Criswell all connected from distance.

Berkel converted a layup to cut the lead to nine with 1:39 to play, but the hot shooting stretch for the Ducks secured a win for the hosts. 

Berkel was the only scorer in double figures for the Fords, but Megan Furch impressed with 10 rebounds while adding six points. Raina Gully set a new personal benchmark with four rebounds. Katie Cook had five assists while Maddie Gallic had a career-high three steals.

Anna Toke was a force for Stevens, tallying a double-double effort with 18 points and 10 rebounds. Megan Brown and Sam Winter each had six rebounds.

Haverford and Stevens are now tied 1-1 in the all-time series that began with a Haverford win a season ago at Gooding '84 Arena.

The Fords now shift focus to conference competition on Wednesday, December 6 as a key matchup with reigning Centennial Conference title holders No. 22 Muhlenberg awaits. The contest in Allentown, Pa., is slated to begin at 6 p.m with the Haverford men's team to follow in action against the Mules at 8 p.m.