Dec. 16 WBB vs. Hiram (L, 69-64); Dec. 17 MBB vs. St. John Fisher (L, 79-70); Dec. 31 MBB vs. Ohio Northern (1:00 p.m.)
BISON WOMEN PUT STREAK ON THE LINE SATURDAY VS. THOMAS MORE
Dec. 8 - BETHANY. W.Va. –The Bethany College women’s basketball team will face a stiff test if its current four-game winning streak is to continue, as the Bison host five-time defending PAC champion Thomas More Saturday in a 2 p.m. tip-off.
The Bison (4-3) won their fourth straight and moved to 3-0 in the PAC for the first time since their last PAC Championship season of 2003-04 with a 72-48 victory at Chatham Wednesday night. Bethany expanded a five-point second half lead by going on a 22-3 surge and cruised to the win. Senior Audra Droginske (Wheeling, W.Va./Wheeling Central) came off the bench to notch a game-high 17 points, while senior Anne Wilson (Saegertown, Pa./Cambridge Springs) and junior Kayla Taormina (Center Twp., Pa./Monaca) both scored 12.
Taormina also grabbed 11 rebounds to record her fourth career double-double and help BC post a 46-36 rebounding advantage. Bethany has continued a long-time trend of doing well on the glass this year, as the Green and White have only been out-rebounded by their opponents in one game this season, the Nov. 19th loss to Hiram. Dating back to the 2009-10 campaign, the Bison have been even or held a rebounding advantage in 50 of the last 59 contests.
Also contributing to the BC victory Wednesday was sophomore guard Skylar Williams (Jefferson Hills, Pa./Thomas Jefferson), who scored a career-high 10 points, matched her personal-best with eight rebounds and passed off three assists. Her play during the winning streak has been a big factor, as in the four wins, she is averaging 8.3 points, 3.8 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.5 steals, which are all above her career numbers.
If the Bison want to keep up with the pace set by the 2003-04 team, they will need a win Saturday against a Thomas More team that has won 13 straight meetings against BC. The only Green and White win in the series came in the first one, which was early in that 03-04 season, a 71-65 triumph on the Bison’s home floor. Last year, the Saints took both match-ups by wide margins, winning 68-42 on their home floor and 87-62 at Bethany.
A perennial Top 25 program in recent years, an early season loss at Capital, who was ranked last week, knocked Thomas More from the poll. However, since that setback, TMC (5-1, 3-0) has won four in a row, including three straight wins to open conference play by an astounding margin of 33.3 points. The latest victory was also the closest, as the Saints held Washington & Jefferson to 17 second-half points in pulling away for a 63-43 win. Thomas More limited W&J to 31 percent shooting, including just 1-for-18 from the arc. Junior forward Katie Kees came off the bench to score 12 and junior point guard Allison Long tallied 11.
Although they registered their second-fewest points in a game this season, the Saints still sit atop the conference in scoring with 69.8 points per game and are hitting a PAC-best 44.3 percent from the floor. Sophomore guard Katie Kitchen, who fired in a school-record 39 points in the season-opening win over Centre (Ky.) College, is second in the league with 16.8 points per game and fellow guard Long is fifth with 14.2 a contest. Long also leads the PAC with 18 three-pointers and is ranked second in three-point percentage (56.3), third in assists (3.5) and fourth in field goal percentage (52.8).