Oiler women’s basketball fall just short of playoffs

By Kevin Schrock

In an up and down year for the Findlay women’s basketball team, they came up just short of making the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) postseason tournament.

After dropping their final game of the year to Wayne State, the Oilers fell to 11-11 in conference play. The loss put them in a tie with Hillsdale for the eighth and final spot in the tournament. Hillsdale lost their final six games in the regular season, but the complex tiebreaker formula that goes into effect in these cases put the Chargers ahead of the Oilers and they earned the final spot in the tournament.

Still for Findlay the season can be considered a success. After going 1-4 in their first five conference games, things could have spiraled down hill quickly for the team. The Oilers quickly turned things around and got back to 5-5 in the GLIAC and with wins over Grand Valley State University, Hillsdale, Ohio Dominican University, and Tiffin University.

The Oilers flirted with the .500 mark for a while before a three game skid at the beginning of February put them at 7-10 at the worst possible time. With only five games left in the season they were at a win or don’t make the tournament point. Well win they did, four games in a row.

Findlay won three straight home games against Ashland, the eventual tournament runner up, Lake Erie, and Walsh. After those wins they went on the road to defeat Malone and their record was now 11-10, identical to Hillsdale’s record.

Despite dropping the last game and falling out of tournament contention, the Oilers did receive some postseason recognition. Senior Ciara Geiger was named second team all-conference. Geiger averaged 11.8 points per game while pulling down 4.2 rebounds a game. Geiger also averaged 1.8 steals and 1.8 assists per game. She also shot 46.5 percent from the field and connected on 39 percent of her attempts from behind the three point line.

Karli Bonar also had a big season for the Oilers. The sophomore established a new single season school record in three pointers. She knocked down 71 and was second behind Geiger in points per game with 10.2. Bonar was also named the GLIAC South player of the week for the week of Jan. 19.

Margaret Wuebker led the Oilers with 4.9 rebounds per game and was tied with Bonar for points per game with 10.2.

The Oilers will lose Geiger to graduation along with Nikki Gunning who averaged 9.4 points per game. Lacey Kessler and Kristin Klausing will also be leaving as seniors but the Oilers return a great core group of players for next year.

Three starters will be back for Findlay. Freshman Hailey Horstman, Bonar, a sophomore, and Wuebker, a junior this past year will all be back.

Findlay finished the year 15-11 and 11-11 in the conference, which is an improvement on their 12-14 and 9-13 conference mark a year ago. Continued improvement is the name of the game for the Oilers.

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