Loyola women’s basketball was going to be in for a tough season as they had to replace the majority of their roster, led by the youngest coaching staff in the country. It’s year one of the healing process following the firing of former head coach Sheryl Swoopes, but that also means a rebuilding year.
The No. 17/16 DePaul Blue Demons (6-4) took full advantage of that as they crushed the Ramblers (1-9) 107-46 at the Gentile Center on Loyola’s campus on Sunday.
“These players have been through a really tough schedule and just because you play a tough schedule doesn’t mean you’re going to get better by it,” DePaul coach Doug Bruno said. “It was very important for us, but if you cut through it we’re 2-4 in our last six. It’s just important that we get back on the court and play ball no matter who the competition is.”
Junior guard Amarah Coleman and freshman guard Kelly Campbell led the game with 16 points each. For Coleman, her 16 points was a follow up of her game on Thursday against Temple, where she hit a career-high 19 points.
“I feel pretty good shooting the ball but I get those shots from my teammates,” Coleman said. “Just from them creating and sharing the ball.”
DePaul raced out to a substantial lead in the opening minutes. By the time Loyola called their first timeout with 7:12 to go in the first quarter, DePaul was already up 14-2. The onslaught did not stop there as DePaul, led by sophomore guard Amarah Coleman, who opened the game 4-4 from three.
DePaul continued to build their lead in the second quarter and essentially put the game out of reach as they led 58-25 at the break. Coleman led the game with 16 points.
In the third quarter the game stopped momentarily when freshman forward Chante Stonewall hit the floor hard and had to be helped off the court. She would not return.
The fourth quarter saw a lot of time for younger bench players as the Blue Demons were in complete control. They finished the game with a 107-46 victory. Bruno was happy how the bench played in this game because, he said, it’s important for the young players to continue to improve.
“We need depth,” Bruno said,” We need players to get developed here. It’s important for those players to contribute.”
DePaul has a short turnaround as they host Tennessee Martin on Tuesday, then they open Big East play against Georgetwon on Dec. 28.