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BETHANY LOOKING FOR ROAD UPSET WEDNESDAY AT #17 SAINT VINCENT
Feb. 8 - BETHANY, W.Va. – The Bethany College women’s basketball team has won four consecutive games on the road, but faces a sturdy challenge if it wants to extend that streak to five with a trip to #17 Saint Vincent coming up on Wednesday. Tip-off is slated for 6 p.m.
The Bison (11-10, 6-6) picked up that fourth win in a row and improved their road record to 7-3 this year with a 69-65 victory at Grove City Saturday. An 18-point first-half lead slipped away from BC, but senior Tara Harris (Zanesville, Ohio) scored 14 of her season-high 19 in the second half to help Bethany bounce back and claim the win. Sophomore Kayla Taormina (Center Twp., Pa./Quigley) scored 20 points, while Harris notched her first double-double of the season with 19 markers and 11 boards and junior Katelynn Hackathorn (Valley Grove, W.Va./Wheeling Park) scored 13.
The game capped a big week for a pair of Bison. Taormina averaged 18 points and 9.5 rebounds while shooting 54 percent (14-26) from the floor and 60 percent (6-10) from deep. Those numbers helped her earn PAC Player of the Week, as well as a spot on the D3Hoops.com National Team of the Week. Hackathorn was a force inside, putting up 16 points and six boards in the pair of wins and she now has double-digit points in four of the last five contests.
The first match-up between Bethany and Saint Vincent this season saw the Bearcats claim a 76-64 triumph, which was the smallest margin of victory for SVC at the time. The Bison slashed a 15-point Saint Vincent lead down to a bucket with eight minutes remaining, but the Bearcats pulled away with a 21-5 run. Junior Audra Droginske (Wheeling, W.Va./Wheeling Central) and Renee Shepherd (New Martinsville, W.Va./Magnolia) both had 15 for Bethany, but SVC countered with Maria Baroffio’s 22 markers and Brittany Sedlock’s 17.
Saint Vincent (19-2, 11-1) suffered their only PAC loss of the year on Jan. 19 to #1 Thomas More in overtime 68-66, but since then, have won five in a row. On Saturday, SVC scored an 80-67 victory at Geneva, as the Bearcats forced 26 turnovers. Also keying the win were huge efforts from forwards Devin McGrath with 23 points, seven rebounds, seven assists and five steals and Brittany Sedlock, who totaled 20 points, 11 boards and three steals.
The Bearcats have relied all season on a pressure defense that creates turnovers and scoring opportunities. Coming into the week, Saint Vincent is third in the nation in turnover margin at +9.86 and fourth in steals with more than 16 a contest. Leading the highest-scoring offense in the PAC (72.9) is Sedlock, who is second in the circuit in points (16.5) and first in rebounding (9.2). Baroffio is the team’s main threat on the perimeter with 13.8 points per game (fourth in PAC) and 37 three-pointers (third), while McGrath’s solid all-around game has her averaging 12.5 points, 6.6 rebounds and a conference-best 3.43 steals.