Langston Hood, Senior Sports Writer
On Nov. 10, the Fighting Scots women’s basketball team traveled to Bluffton University to take on the Beavers in a Saturday night showdown. Wooster looked to notch their first win of the season after falling to Franscisan University in the season opener. The game would serve as Bluffton’s season opener, with the Beavers looking to repeat last season’s success where they finished second in the Heartland Conference. Wooster would also be without two likely starters in Harley Holloway ’24 and Alyssa Chritz ’24 due to injury and sickness.
The Scots faced some adversity in the first quarter as Bluffton’s veterans made their experience known, building a 20-9 lead. Wooster’s youthful starting five consisted of three first-years and the team struggled to hang with the Beavers in the early stages of the game. The frigid weather seemed to translate onto the court as Wooster struggled to produce offensively. Despite the early troubles, Ella Dean ’26 proved to be a bright spot for the Fighting Scots.
Bluffton continued their offensive dominance as their ball movement and experience allowed them to operate their offense seamlessly in front of a crowd that constantly spurred them on. The home opener proved to be the talk of the town as the Beavers’ fans flooded the stadium far and wide to cheer on their team. Bluffton was a model of consistency, as they scored an identical 20 points in the second half while Wooster was only able to muster six. Although the Scots were disappointed in their performance, it was an opportunity to compete against a team that is on the back end of a rebuild, similar to that which the Scots are beginning in the second year of the Coach Tierney regime.
The Scots were well aware of this opportunity as Ella Dean ’26 reflected on her takeaways from Saturday’s game. “One thing I learned during the game is that when we play team basketball — when we communicate, have patience and bring the energy — we play better basketball,” Dean said. The beauty of the condensed college season lies in the fact that Wooster will have ample opportunity to show their true colors, colors that hopefully will start to reveal themselves this weekend as the team will compete in the Nan Nichols Classic, which pays homage to the storied pioneer of Wooster women’s sports. Nichols coached the women’s basketball team to three national tournament championships as well as a conference championship, compiling a career record of 186-131. She was also the Director of Women’s Athletics for 21 years, coached the swim team and served in many other leadership roles at the conference and regional levels.
Wooster is eager to put this past weekend’s loss behind them as they look forward to back-to-back home games against Hilbert and Case Western. Paige Wells ’23 emphasized this point saying, “heading into next week it’s important that we stay together and build off of this game.” Wells added that “I’m excited to continue growing as a team and for people to see what we can really do.”
Chloe Pordash ’26 said, “personally, I am very excited to play in the Nan Nichols Classic this weekend and to be able to play on our home court for the first time this year,” echoing Wells’ eagerness.
Come support your Fighting Scots at the next games at home on Saturday at 6:45 and Sunday at 3:15!