After a rough season, the Bradley women’s basketball team concluded its season on a high note after defeating the Southern Illinois Salukis 86-68 on senior night on March 8.
The Braves four seniors, Kelsey Budd, Catie O’Leary, Alyson Spinas-Valanis and Kelly Frings, were honored in a pregame ceremony.
The Braves started the game slow, but eventually took a 27-26 lead on a jumper by Catie O’Leary, who finished the game with 19 points.
After extending their lead 40-34, SIU nailed a three-point shot to make the halftime score 40-37.
However, the second half belonged to the Braves. They picked up the pace and took over defensively, thanks to Michelle Young’s career-high seven steals and game-high 23 points.
“Being able to play at our pace is where we’re the best,” said Coach Michael Brooks. “I think for us to push them and to drag them into the dirt, and you could see they were dragging towards the end, I think that was definitely the difference.”
Along with getting the win, the team got to send off their seniors on a positive note, which provided a sentimental victory along with the game victory.
“It means a lot that my teammates are willing to put it all on the line for me,” said senior Alyson Spinas-Valanis. “Especially for our last home stand.”
“That’s what it’s about,” said Brooks. “It’s great for them to be able to leave here as winners.”
The Braves officially ended the season with a 75-69 loss to Loyola in the MVC tournament on March 13, and finished with a 8-22 record.