Women’s basketball: DePaul trumps rival Marquette 77-66


Donald Crocker

Women’s basketball forward Aneesah Morrow taking a shot against Butler on Dec. 3.

Smooth, clean and calm—that’s how DePaul women’s basketball won 77-66 against Marquette women’s basketball Wednesday night.

hough the game began neck-to-neck DePaul soon pushed past, reaching a lead of 25 points against Marquette in the third quarter.

Graduate student guard Deja Church flew across the court, covering every inch of ground she could manage. Church shined bright in her offense as she secured 23 points for the team. She scored every free throw she shot, totaling seven free throws along with seven field goals and two 3-pointers.

Though Church’s offense was strong, her defense was what helped steal the game from Marquette tonight. Stealing the ball from Marquette’s grip, Church walked away with eight rebounds.

Church played one of the best games in her career last night, scoring one point short of her career best. Her best scoring game was against Marquette on Feb. 7, 2021. She scored seven free throws, hitting her career best for the fourth time.

Church attributes her gameplay this season to it being her last season. She said because this is her last year she is focusing on the fun of the sport.

“I’m just having fun,” Church said. “It’s no pressure on me and that’s really it. I’m just going out there and having fun.”

Head coach Doug Bruno said seniors should be having fun in their last season. He said many athletes in their final season get worried because their career is coming to a close.

“When you tell [the seniors] the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth that everything is going to be alright when the last basket is made and when their careers are over and when the cocoon of college ends, every single senior as a college senior gets tight,” Bruno said. “We really have taught to our seniors and try to work with our seniors this is experience, again, to try to put them in a place of ‘everything is going to be alright, you’re going to have options, everyone is going to have options when this is over.’”

Despite Church being the star of the show last night, freshman forward Aneesah Morrow racked up 21 points and 17 rebounds, earning her another double-double.

The defense Morrow and junior guard Kierra Collier put up held back Marquette players senior Chloe Marotta and sophomore Liza Karlen from making a majority of the shots they tossed up.

Church said the team had a lot of trust in Morrow when facing Marquette, but she also  said the team has trusted Morrow since she first stepped in the gym.

But the trust the team has for Morrow doesn’t stop with just her achievements, it is because she is consistently improving. Morrow said she has actually improved the most in her conditioning, which has been the most beneficial to the team’s advantage.

“I know the first few games or the first few practices were tough for me,” Morrow said. “It’s literally a running game and it was very tough transitioning from high school to college.”

Though Morrow isn’t the only one on the team who has seen growth and improvement, Bruno himself has also seen it too, especially with his induction into the Women’s Basketball  Hall of Fame. Bruno said he is thankful to the coaches, players and bosses he has had and was honored to receive the title.

“I’m honored, I’m thrilled, I’m humbled, I’m thankful,” Bruno said. “What we do every day is wake up in the morning and we try to teach our players to wake up in the morning with a smile, show the world you’re beautiful, thank God for the opportunity to have another day, you thank God by working with your God-given potential.”

“I was foolish enough after it happened, watching the game on Monday night, to think I was gonna be able to answer my texts,” Bruno said. “I’m honored, but at the same time this is about this team, this is what this is about and, I’m asked, ‘Do I hold myself to a higher standard?’ I just hold myself to a standard for this team. This team’s got work to do to earn the right to play against the NCAA tournament, that’s all I could care about.”

The women’s basketball team plays Villanova next on Sunday.