The Voice of Bates College Since 1873

The Bates Student

The Voice of Bates College Since 1873

The Bates Student

The Voice of Bates College Since 1873

The Bates Student

Bates Suffers Late-Game Deficit Against Wartburg College to Miss Out on Elite Eight

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Carly Philpott
Bates students gathered around a TV in Commons stare in disbelief after a buzzer-beater layup won Wartburg College a trip to the Elite Eight over Bates.

After a historic season, women’s basketball lost to Wartburg College on a buzzer-beater layup, ending their NCAA DIII Tournament run with the Sweet Sixteen on March 8.

The game started strong for Bates, who led 17-8 after the first quarter and maintained the lead until midway through the fourth quarter. In the tense final minutes of the game, Wartburg took the lead. 

Bates pulled ahead thanks to a basket by captain and guard Morgan Kennedy ‘24, but with just a few seconds left, Bates missed two free throws, leaving them with just a one-point lead.

Warburg’s guard Macy Harris then scored a last-minute lay-up, and Wartburg took the court in celebration – but game officials put 0.1 seconds back on the clock, forcing Bates to attempt one more impossible possession. Wartburg blocked an inbound pass from Bates and the game was over.

It was a record-breaking run for Bates this season – despite losing to Bowdoin College in the NESCAC championship, they made it to the Sweet Sixteen for the third time ever in program history. It was the first time they had won two games to get there.

Bates students rallied around women’s basketball this season, packing Alumni Gym for many of their big home games. Dozens of Bates students made the trek to Rhode Island College to see the Sweet Sixteen game, giving Bates what the announcers called “almost a home court advantage.” And hundreds more students crowded around screens in Commons to watch the match.

Game leaders in the Sweet Sixteen game included Kennedy with 17 points scored and guard Sarah Hughes ‘27 with 15 points scored. Defensively, Bates managed to control American Rivers Conference winner Wartburg’s three-pointer-heavy play for much of the game.

Going into the next season, Bates will gain several first-years but will lose leaders Kennedy, guard Alyson Kennedy ‘24, and captain and guard Davina Kabantu ‘24.

But Morgan Kennedy thinks the team dynamic will survive with emerging leaders such as guard Alexandra Long ‘25.

“[Long] has been a really key part in the glue of our team this year,” Kennedy said. “And I also think that especially our freshmen and sophomores who have taken on larger roles this year, I think they’re prepared. I know they don’t want us to leave but they’re a lot more prepared than they think they are.”

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About the Contributor
Carly Philpott, Assistant News Editor
Carly is a first-year from Centennial, Colo. The Student was a major reason she chose Bates after a longtime love for journalism. You can find Carly at the Bates Historical Society or taking photos of ducks on the Puddle for the Bates Communications Office. She also enjoys quality time with her pet toads, pictured.

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