GILBERT, Ariz. -- Wesleyan's opponent Tuesday in the Nike Tournament of Champions, Christ the King (N.Y.), features athletic 6-foot guard Sierra Calhoun, one of the nation's top sophomores.
The Wolves had the answer, though, with 6-1 junior guard Katie Frerking.
Frerking's tough defense on Calhoun, along with her 14 points and team-high 12 rebounds, paired with a 20-point game from Holli Wilkins as the Wesleyan girls defeated Christ the King 54-39 in the prestigious national tournament. The Wolves (8-1) advance to play Bolingbrook (Ill.) today in the Joe Smith Division, the event's top bracket.
"Katie Frerking did a fantastic job on (Calhoun)," Wesleyan girls coach Jan Azar said. "She guarded her well and held her to four points. And she scored 14. So Katie was a big difference in the game, especially on the defensive end. ... We put her on the other team's best player because she's got length and she's a guard. We don't have a lot of height at the guard position."
Wesleyan's other guards also played well -- Jordan Frazier had seven assists and Brittany Stevens continued her solid play.
The Wolves, who lost to Good Counsel (Md.) Monday in the first round, got off to a slow start again Tuesday and led by only two points at halftime before taking control in a decisive third quarter. Their pressure defense began to cause Christ the King problems, setting up the Class A powerhouse with a comfortable lead.
"I'm much more pleased with our second half than our first half," Azar said. "But we played better today than yesterday. If we keep getting better every day, then that's why we came out here."
Wesleyan's next game offers a huge test.
Bolingbrook, which was upset in the first round, is ranked No. 1 nationally by USA Today and No. 6 nationally in the ESPN/Hoopgurlz FAB 50 poll. The program features eight seniors who signed Division I letters of intent, including Morgan Tuck (Connecticut), Nia Moore (Illinois) and Cabriana Capers (Auburn). Tuck, a 6-foot-2 post, is ranked by multiple services as one of the nation's top 20 players.
Incarnate Word 54, Buford 23
GILBERT, Ariz. -- St. Louis power Incarnate Word used its pressure defense to befuddle Buford from the start Tuesday, handing the Wolves a 54-23 loss in the Joe Smith Division of the Nike Tournament of Champions.
Purdue signee Taylor Manuel scored a game-high 25 to lead Incarnate Word.
Buford (5-2) was down 15-4 after a quarter and 30-15 at halftime. The Wolves play the St. John's College (D.C.)-Irving MacArthur (Texas) loser today.