Warhawk Women Advance to Sweet 16 for Third Straight Season

Aleah Grundahl and Kacie Carollo celebrate after the win (Olivia Zinanni)

By Angela Kelm
Asst. Athletic Director for Sports Information

 The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater women’s basketball team advanced to the round of 16 in the NCAA Division III Tournament with an 89-65 win over Millikin Saturday night in Kachel Gym. Junior guard Kacie Carollo led the way with the first triple-double in UWW history — 27 points, 13 rebounds, 10 assists. 

The Warhawks will make a third straight appearance in the round of 16 starting next week. UWW will face Hope on March 8 with both the time and location of the game to be announced by the NCAA in the coming days. Information on the next round of play will be released when available.

UW-Whitewater was dialed in for the second straight game shooting over 60-percent from the floor. The Warhawks set the tone early as Katie Hildebrandt tallied the first bucket of the game. Carollo made it 5-0 UWW after drilling a three-pointer. She added an old-fashioned three-point play 40 seconds later, powering in a layup and hitting the ensuing free throw to push the lead to 8-2. The Warhawks continued to build throughout the quarter with Carollo finding Aleah Grundahl under the basket for a last second layin to give UWW a 24-15 lead after the first. 

Grundahl and Carollo combined for 18 points on 7-10 from the floor in the first 10 minutes of action. The pair continued their phenomenal play with 11 points on 5-8 from the floor while Carollo posted six boards and four assists in the second quarter. Meanwhile, the whole offense was clicking in the quarter as UW-Whitewater hit 9-13 as a team. By the intermission, the Warhawk advantage grew to 21-points, 46-25. 

Defensively, Renee Rittmeyer drew the tough task of guarding the 2023 Division III Player of the Year in Elyce Knudsen for the majority of the half. Rittmeyer and the UWW defense allowed just 10 points from the second-best scorer in the nation in the first 20 minutes of action. 

Although the teams were even in the third period – each scoring 24 – Millikin made a run to narrow the gap to 15 at one point. The Big Blue’s potent offense seemed to be getting going, but the Warhawk offense could not be slowed. UWW shot 73-percent from the floor in the period hitting 8-11 to all but seal the game. 

In addition to Carollo’s team-leading triple-double, Grundahl dropped in 26 bolstered by 10-15 from the floor. She added five boards, four steals and a pair of assists. Hildebrandt posted double figures in the scoring column with 13 while Mallory Oloffson hit 4-5 from the field for 10 points. Hildebrandt led all players with three blocks in the game

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