Wilmington Women’s Basketball Hangs On Late To Take 65-62 Decision against Georgian Court
WBB: Wilmington 65 - Georgian Court 62
Tuesday, January 14, 2014 - Newark, Del.
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Sophomore Tiaja Harrold tied the program record with eight steals on Tuesday night while also scoring 10 points. Copyright 2014; Wilmington University. All rights reserved. Photo by Althea Davidson
Junior Tashea Plummer grabbed a team high 11 rebounds, five of which came on the offensive glass on Tuesday night. Copyright 2014; Wilmington University. All rights reserved. Photo by Althea Davidson
Sophomore Tenicia Spence scored 35 points, hitting four three-pointers on Tuesday night against Georgian Court. Copyright 2014; Wilmington University. All rights reserved. Photo by Althea Davidson
The Wilmington University women’s basketball team held off a furious second half comeback against Georgian Court, 65-62, in Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference action on Tuesday night at the WU Athletics Complex.
Sophomore Tiaja Harrold tied the single game record with eight steals while also scoring 10 points and dishing out a team high four assists in helping the Wildcats (5-10, 2-6 CACC) fend off the Lions (3-11, 2-6 CACC) down the stretch. The Lions nearly overcame a 15 point halftime deficit, closing the gap to as few as two points in the final minute.
Wilmington got out to a big lead in the first half, turning a 4-4 tied game into a double-digit lead on the strength of a 17-5 run, capped by a fastbreak steal and ensuing layup by Tenicia Spence with 10:03 to play in the first half. The lead grew to as large as 18 points in the opening 20 minutes after Spence hit a three-pointer and followed it up with another layup, moving ahead 28-11. After the Lions hit a three-pointer, the Wildcats received a foul shot from Jennifer Carr before Tashea Plummer converted a layup as she was foul, and hitting the ensuing foul shot for the 32-14 lead with 5:27 left in the first half.
The Lions were able to whittle the score to 37-22 in favor of the Wildcats heading into the halftime break. Spence led the way with 18 first half points for the Wildcats.
The second half was a different story for the Wildcats, as they could only go 11-of-35 from floor in the second 20 minutes, shooting 31.4 percent compared to the Lions 44.1 percent. In all, the Lions outscored the Wildcats, 40-28, in the second half, but it wasn’t enough as the Wildcats held on down the stretch for the win.
Georgian Court scored the first 10 points of the second half, closing the gap to 37-32 with 15:18 to play in regulation. The Wildcats bounced back and scored the next six points to jump the margin back into double digits with 14:17 remaining. The lead was as large as 13 with 11:39 to play before the Lions made one final push to get back into the contest.
Trailing 54-43, the Lions went on a 10-2 run on the strength of 3-of-4 shooting from the floor and 4-of-4 shooting from the foul line to close within 56-53 with 4:42 to play. The Wildcats were able to keep the visitors at an arm’s length, however, pushing the lead back out to eight points on a jumper by Harrold with 2:06 left on the scoreboard.
Georgian Court came back with a layup and four straight foul shots to get within 64-62 with only nine seconds remaining, but Spence was able to hit one of her two free throws with six second left, not allowing the Lions to get a good look from half court for the tie at the buzzer.
Spence finished with 35 points, the third most in a single game in the Wildcats’ NCAA era. She also has the second most (36), coming earlier this season at Lancaster Bible. Plummer grabbed a team high 11 rebounds while Carr finished with 10 boards.
The five wins for the Wildcats are the most in a season since the 2009-10 team went 15-13 overall and 12-7 in the CACC.
Wilmington returns to action this Saturday at the WU Athletics Complex, as the Wildcats host North Division foe Bloomfield for a CACC doubleheader. The women begin the doubleheader at 1 p.m., followed by the men’s game at 3 p.m.