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Feb. 11 – GREENVILLE, Pa. – After two halves filled with seven tied scores and nine lead changes, the Bethany College women’s basketball team triumphed over host Thiel in overtime by a score of 91-87 Saturday, a win that also featured senior Anne Wilson (Saegertown, Pa./Cambridge Springs) scoring her 1,000th career point.

The Bison offense lagged behind Thiel (6-17, 6-10) for most of the first half until sophomore guard Skylar Williams (Jefferson Hills, Pa./Thomas Jefferson) netted a three-pointer with nearly four minutes to play to tie the score 27-27. Senior guard Anne Wilson (Saegertown, Pa./Cambridge Springs) scored seven of the Bison’s next nine points to follow, giving the team the lead at the half 36-31.

The battle continued between the two teams in the second half as Bethany managed to keep their lead and break through two ties for much of the first 10 minutes. The advantage flipped soon after as Thiel’s Kelly Barzak scored 14 of her 26 points in the second half, propelling the Tomcat offense. She scored four points during an 18-6 spurt that pushed Thiel in front 68-60.

With 6:15 left to play and down eight points, experience showed through, as several seniors led the Bison comeback. Senior forward Renee Shepherd (New Martinsville, W.Va./Magnolia) jump started the momentum, as she drained a three from behind the arc. Wilson continued to have the hot hand, as she netted two more three-pointers, including a trey at the 3:17 mark to put her over 1,000 points for her career, and made two free throws to keep the Bison nipping at the tail of the Tomcats. Senior forward Katelynn Hackathorn (Valley Grove, W.Va./Wheeling Park), who scored 12 of her 19 points in the second half, made her second free throw with 2:11 left on the clock to finally tie the game 75-75.

The next minute and a half saw misses from both sides until a Hackathorn steal allowed the Bison to have a timeout and the ball with 33 seconds left to play. Following the timeout, junior guard Kayla Taormina (Center Twp., Pa./Quigley) scored two with a lay-up to give Bethany the advantage. However, with 1.5 seconds on the clock, Thiel’s Barzak fired back with her own lay-up sending both teams into overtime.

The offensive momentum remained in Thiel’s favor at the start of overtime as they gained the 85-81 led following another Barzak score with 3:34 left to play. BC continued to battle as Wilson made a layup, bringing the score within two. With nearly two and a half minutes to play, Hackathorn grabbed her 13th rebound of the game off a Tomcat missed lay-up and dished it out to Shepherd, who netted another three to give Bethany the lead by one. Another Wilson jumper and success at the line in the closing seconds sealed the victory for the Green & White, as they pulled away with the 91-87 win.

As a team, Bethany shot 83 percent (24-29) from the line, while several strong individual performances lead the Bison to their highest scoring game of the season. With her career-high 23-point performance, Wilson became the 15th women’s player in BC history to accomplish the 1,000-point feat and first since Jenny Place in 2006. Taormina also contributed with 23 points, while Hackathorn had 19 points with 14 rebounds and five assists. Shepherd also scored an additional 11 with eight boards.

In addition to Barzak’s big game, Ashley Davis piled in 26 for Thiel while Kelly Muffley scored 12.

Bethany, now 14-9 and 10-6 in the PAC, is one win away from sealing their fourth place mark in the league standings and a first round home game in the PAC Tournament. BC will return home to host Westminster Wednesday evening for their final home game during the regular season and the program will honor its five seniors prior to tip-off, which is scheduled for 6 p.m.

By: Candace Pacheco
Sports Information Student Assistant