Feb. 23 – BETHANY, W. Va. – The Bethany College women’s basketball team’s season came to an abrupt end as they fell 77-65 to Westminster College in the opening round of the Presidents’ Athletic Conference Championship Tournament on Monday evening in Bethany.
The first seven and a half minutes of were a back-and-forth affair as the teams posted three ties and four lead changes. The last lead change came with the Bison down 12-11 at the 12:57 mark of the first stanza. Bethany retook the lead as part of an 11-4 run that gave the Green & White their largest advantage of the game, 22-16, with 8:16 to play.
In the Bison’s run, junior Mikyla Tipton (Wellsville, Ohio/Wellsville) opened the scoring with a jumper, which was followed by a bucket from sophomore Carly Grady (Keyser, W. Va./Keyser). Following a basket by the Titans, junior Gabrielle Naples (Salem, Ohio/South Range) converted on her first triple of the half. Westminster’s Rachel Durbin would respond again, before Tipton rattled off four-straight points, including a three-point basket which gave Bethany the six-point advantage.
Over the next 2:16, Westminster would retake control of the lead, using a 7-0 run to re-take the advantage 23-22 with 6:00 to go in the opening frame. The team’s would change control of the lead four more times during the final 4:40 of the first half. The final lead change came at the halftime buzzer, as Westminster’s Jenna Grandy nailed a three at the horn to send the Bison into the locker room down 30-27 at the break.
The second-half would see the teams continue to play close as Westminster continued to keep the Bison at bay. The Titans held a 47-41 advantage with 11:44 to play, but the Bison would then gear up for another run.
Using their second 11-4 run of the game, the Green & White would recapture the one-point lead, 52-51, with 8:36 left in regulation. Grady contributed two baskets to the cause, including the final jumper of the run which gave the Bison the one-point advantage.
However, just like in the first half, Westminster would respond with a 7-0 run, pushing their lead back to six (58-52) on a jumper by Kristine Fromknecht. The Green & White would get no closer than five points over the rest of regulation, eventually falling by a score of 77-65.
Offensively, Tipton led the way for the Bison posting 18 points and a career-high seven assists. Grady and Naples each also finished in double figures in the contest as Naples totaled 11 and Grady, 10.
The Green & White finish the season with a record of 12-14. Their 12 victories marked the most by the Bison since the 2011-12 campaign.