Season Review: Women's Basketball records sixth consecutive winning season, claims OAC Regular Season title in 2015

Season Review: Women's Basketball records sixth consecutive winning season, claims OAC Regular Season title in 2015

By: Ashley Birchmeier

The Ohio Northern women's basketball team posted another successful season in 2014-15.

Under 14th-year head coach Michele Durand, the Polar Bears recorded their sixth consecutive winning season with a 20-6 record.

ONU also claimed the Ohio Athletic Conference regular season crown, with a 16-2 mark.

Senior Jordan Kimes was named the OAC Co-Player of the Year, while freshman Amy Bullimore was named OAC Freshman of the Year and Coach Durand was named OAC Coach of the Year.

Durand earned her second consecutive OAC coach of the year honor and the third of her career.

Kimes earned her first player of the year honor and her second All-OAC honor as the senior was named First Team All-OAC in 2014 and 2015.

Kimes finished her career with 1,046 points, twelfth all-time in ONU history.

Bullimore was second on the team in rebounds averaging 5.9 rpg and was second in field goal percentage, shooting 54.1 percent from the field.

Junior Carly Thomas also received All-OAC honors, as she was named Second Team All-Conference.

The junior led the team in steals in 2014-15 averaging 1.5 spg and is currently ranked ninth in ONU history in 3-point percentage, shooting 37.1 percent.

Five Polar Bears were named Academic All-OAC.

Junior Brooke Espenschied, sophomore Angela Tesny, senior Mary Miller, Thomas and Kimes all received the honor.

Espenschied saw action in all 26 games last season making 25 starts. She was second on the team in assists averaging 2.6 apg.

Tesny had 46 assist and 19 steals as the starting point guard last season for the Polar Bears.

Miller earned her second Academic All-OAC selection after appearing in 15 games last season.

Northern opened its 2014-15 season at the Franklin Tipp-Off Classic where the Polar Bears took down Trine (Ind.) 70-64 on day one of the classic and fell on day two to the host Franklin (Ind.) 46-44.

Ohio Northern bounced back, picking up three straight non-conference wins against Kenyon, Adrian (Mich.), and Defiance.

The Polar Bears then opened OAC play at Otterbein, where they defeated the Cardinals 84-52, and Bullimore recorded her second double double of her career.

Northern then returned to the ONU Sports Center for a two-game home stretch with nationally ranked OAC opponent John Carroll and non-conference opponent Ohio Wesleyan.

The Polar Bears defeated John Carroll 73-70 and fell to Ohio Wesleyan 75-73.

Ohio Northern closed out December picking up wins over Capital and Muskingum to remain perfect in OAC play.

Following Christmas break, the ladies continued their dominance in OAC play as they defeated Mount Union 61-59, took down Marietta 69-60, and defeated Wilmington 69-52 to move to 7-0 in the OAC.

During the win streak, Thomas scored a season and career-best 16 points, while Kimes grabbed a season-best 16 rebounds.

Tesny then went on to score a season and career-best 13 points as the Polar Bears dropped their first OAC game of the season to Baldwin Wallace 69-64.

Following the loss, ONU won three straight, defeating Heidelberg, Capital, and Otterbein to move to 10-1 in the OAC.

John Carroll handed the Polar Bears their last loss of the regular season as the Pioneers were able to capture the 63-49 win at home.

ONU closed out the regular season 20-6 overall, 16-2 OAC after winning six straight and claiming the No. 1 seed in the OAC Tournament.

Northern saw its season come to an end in the Semifinals of the OAC Tournament as the top-seeded Polar Bears fell to third-seeded Capital 66-54.