Feb. 12 – PITTSBURGH, Pa. - The Bethany College women’s basketball team used strong performances from Taylor Verrico (Monaca, Pa./Quigley) and Sami Schott (Caldwell, Ohio/Shenandoah) to grab their third straight Presidents’ Athletic Conference victory, as they upended Chatham University 87-78 on Wednesday night.
With the game tied at 8-8 with 17:12 remaining the first period, Bethany would embark on a 20-10 run over the next nine minutes to take a 28-18 lead at the 8:41 mark.
The run was highlighted by Gabrielle Naples (Salem, Ohio/South Range), who asserted herself on the offensive end of the floor, scoring seven points over the span.
Bethany (7-15, 6-9 PAC) would then hold the lead for the rest of the half, entering intermission with a 12-point advantage (47-35).
The Bison dominated the glass in the first stanza, outrebounding the Cougars 29-14, which included 11 offensive rebounds.
The second half saw the Cougars come out on a mission, going on a 18-5 run to take a one-point lead (53-52) with 12:24 to play in the game. The run was capped off with a jumper by Jesse Hinkle.
Bethany would not crumble, however, as they stemmed the tide and recaptured the momentum with a 17-6 run, to retake a 10-point lead (69-59). The outburst was finished off by Verrico, who nailed a jumper from downtown at the 6:56 mark of the second half.
The Cougars would never get closer then six points (69-63) as the Bison cruised to the 87-78 triumph.
Bethany was aggressive from the start, as they got to the line early and often, attempting a season-high 39 free throws, which included 14 from Lauren Simpson (Washington, Pa./Trinity).
Offensively the Bison were led by standouts Verrico and Schott. Verrico notched her sixth double-double of the year, scoring a team-high 21 points and corralling 11 rebounds. Not to be outdone, Schott tallied her fifth double-double on the season, dropping 17 points and 10 boards.
Joining the party were Simpson, Gabrielle Naples and Alexis Naples (Salem, Ohio/South Range). Simpson converted on 11-of-14 from charity stripe, en route to 13 points. Gabrielle Naples chipped in 12 points and four rebounds, while Alexis Naples notched a career-high nine assists.
The women will look to extend their first three-game win streak of the year on Saturday, Feb. 15, when they travel to Latrobe, Pa., to take on Saint Vincent College. Tipoff is scheduled for 4 p.m.