EWU women’s basketball drops game to Boise State as Hodgins sisters reunite


(left to right) Delaney, Hayley and Braydey Hodgins after EWU’s loss to Boise State on Dec. 3. Braydey is a sophomore guard for Boise State, Hayley is EWU’s all-time leading scorer and Delaney is No. 3 on the program’s scoring list. | Jeremy Burnham for The Easterner

By Jeremy Burnham, Reporter

There was a Hodgins family reunion at Reese Court on Dec. 3, as the EWU women’s basketball team fell to Boise State University 61-57. Eagles senior forward—and the program’s No. 3 in career points–Delaney Hodgins faced off against her sister, BSU sophomore guard Braydey Hodgins. Their older sister Hayley, who happens to be EWU’s all-time leading scorer, was in the stands to watch her sisters clash.

Braydey was playing in just her second game of the season after returning from a hand injury. She came off the bench for the Broncos with her team down 9-5. The first time Braydey touched the ball, she drove through the lane for a layup in traffic, but was called for an offensive foul. That would be one of her only mistakes in the game, as she led her team in scoring with 14 points. No one was more surprised by Braydey leading the Broncos in scoring than the sophomore guard herself.

“I didn’t expect to do that,” said Braydey. “ It’s not my job to lead the team in scoring. I was able to put on some pressure, and get to the free throw line and I think that’s what really helped us.”

On the EWU side, Delaney Hodgins also led her team in scoring, tallying 26 points in the loss. No other Eagle was able to score in double digits. This season, Hodgins being the only EWU scorer has been a losing recipe for the Eagles, as it has allowed teams to double and triple-team her when she has the ball.

Junior guard Symone Starks provided a spark in the fourth quarter and finished with nine points, but it wasn’t enough to match the Broncos, who had five players score in double digits.

The Eagles jumped out to a 9-2 lead early in the first quarter, but stalled after that. The lead was reduced to 13-11 by the time the frame ended.

The second quarter was a rough one for the Eagle as BSU outscored them 15-6. EWU head coach Wendy Schuller saw this quarter as the turning point of the game.

“We had a really bad second quarter,” said Schuller. “We got into a hole, and it’s hard to dig yourself out of a hole like that.”

The Eagles were outshot 53 percent to 28 percent in the first half. They turned things around after halftime, outshooting the Broncos 53 percent to 31 percent.

The fourth quarter started with the Broncos leading 44-32, but the Eagles closed the gap quickly. Both Hodgins sisters came up big for their teams in the fourth. Midway through the quarter with her team up seven points, Braydey hit a three, putting her team back up by double digits.

This wouldn’t last 15 seconds, however, as the Eagles moved the ball up the court quickly and Delaney knocked down a triple of her own. On the Eagles next possession, Delaney missed a jumper, got her own rebound, and made a layup while drawing the foul. She completed the three-point-play, and the Eagles were back in the game.

While the Eagles were able to pull within three, they weren’t able to get any closer than that. Foul trouble for the Eagles kept Boise State on the line down the stretch, and the Broncos made 13 out of their 15 free throws for the game. The Broncos came out with the victory, but one member of the crowd left the game conflicted over the result.

“It’s hard,” said Hayley Hodgins said. “You kind of clap for both sides. But my allegiance is always a little bit with the Eagles. So it was too bad to see them go down, but I have seen them improve as the season has gone on, and I only see that continuing.”

Schuller, who felt her team didn’t play tough enough in the loss against Gonzaga on Thursday, was happier with their effort on Sunday.

“I thought we had great energy, and played extremely hard,” said Schuller. “The effort level was great, and I was very pleased about that.”

While the Eagles are now 2-5, Delaney Hodgins is not ready to hit the panic button before Big Sky Conference play has even started.

“We’re still feeling everybody out, ourselves the most,” said Delaney. “ That’s what’s most important heading into Big Sky play. Once we do that, we will start getting wins on the board, but right now we’re just focusing on ourselves.”