It was an afternoon where 50 years of basketball at Kates Gymnasium was celebrated.
After a 111-46 win over Tiffin on Saturday (Jan. 27), there was another thing to celebrate for Ashland University's women's basketball team – tying another NCAA Division II record.
The top-ranked Eagles earned their 57th consecutive victory on Saturday. That not only extends the Division II women's basketball record, but it also ties the D-II basketball record, regardless of gender, set by Winona State's men from Jan. 13, 2006-March 22, 2007.
"I love the way we set the tone in the beginning," said Ashland head coach Robyn Fralick, now 88-2 (.978) guiding the Eagles, "with the full court and the half court. They have good spacing and they back-cut, and I thought we did a good job...having sustainable pressure."
Ashland is 20-0 overall and 12-0 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, while the Dragons are 6-14, 2-10. The Eagles have won at least their first 20 games in each of the last three seasons, and in four of the last six.
Through the middle of Saturday afternoon, Ashland's magic number to clinch a GLIAC Tournament spot was two, and its magic number for a GLIAC South Division title was six.
1. Senior forward Andi Daugherty scored a season-high 25 points on 11-of-15 shooting from the field, and added seven rebounds and four assists. She became the third player in program history to score at least 1,750 career points (1,758).
"Something I love about this team is no one genuinely cares about their individual stats," Daugherty said. "We just want to win, so whatever it takes to win night in and night out is what it's going to be."
2. Sophomore guard Jodi Johnson (17), senior forward Laina Snyder (14), sophomore forward/guard Sara Loomis (14), senior forward Julie Worley (11), sophomore guard Renee Stimpert (10) all scored in double digits. Johnson pilfered eight steals and didn't miss a shot (6-for-6 field goals, 3-for-3 3-point field goals, 2-for-2 free throws), Loomis grabbed eight rebounds and Stimpert added seven assists.
"We're going to continue to do what we do," Johnson said, "and as coach Fralick has been saying, we're in pursuit of a 40-minute game. I feel like today, we got a step closer to that."
3. Ashland scored at least 100 points for the 11th time in 2017-18, and the 22nd time during the winning streak. The Eagles have hit triple figures four games in a row, and eight times in the last 10 outings.
4. While AU's offense grabs the headlines, its defense continues to shine, as well. The Eagles forced 43 turnovers, second-most this season, and kept the Dragons to 39.0-percent shooting from the field.
5. Ashland scored the game's first six points before Tiffin had a chance to set up on offense. It was an 11-7 Eagle lead before a run to end the quarter of 23-6 made it a 21-point advantage going into the second.
6. By halftime, Ashland's lead was 69-22, and the Eagles went on to victory from there. In the game's first 20 minutes, Daugherty posted 19 points, seven rebounds and three assists, and was 8-of-11 from the field.
7. The Eagles have won at least 20 games in four straight seasons, six of the last seven and for the 10th time in the 51 seasons of the program.
8. Saturday's win was Ashland's eighth in a row over the Dragons.
9. The Eagles are up to a school-record 54 consecutive victories in the regular season, a program-best 49 wins in a row in the regular season at home, a school-record-tying 38 straight Ws in the GLIAC regular season, a program-high 35 straight GLIAC regular-season home victories and 30 straight wins at home overall.
10. Tiffin was led by Jensen Hiegel, who scored 13 points.
The start of a fourth road trip to Michigan in 2017-18, Thursday (Feb. 1) at 5:30 p.m. at Wayne State (14-4, 9-3).