Press Release Written by Sports Information Graduate Intern Mary Kate Rumbaugh
ORANGEBURG, N.Y. – A 25-5 run by the Wilmington University women's basketball team wasn't enough, as Dominican came back late in the third and early in the fourth quarter to secure the cross-division matchup, 81-70, on Saturday afternoon at the Hennessy Center.
Down 38-28 at the half, the Wildcats (1-13, 1-5 CACC) would start the third quarter on a 25-5 run to retake the lead, but the Chargers (6-9, 4-2 CACC) would hang on late to retake the lead and come out with the victory.
It was a tight matchup to begin the contest, as neither team would have a lead bigger than three points. With 5:39 to play in the first, Kasha Andrews tied things up on a three ball to make it a 6-6 game. Redshirt senior LaShyra Williams would score the final four points for WilmU in the quarter to put them back within one, making it 17-16 going into the second.
Wilmington would jump out to a 22-19 lead thanks to a steal and layup from Emily Ansah, but with 2:03 to go until the half, the Chargers would find some rhythm going on a 12-4 run, sinking back-to-back three-pointers to end the half up by 10.
The Wildcats would come out strong to begin the second half, holding the Chargers offense to their first bucket with 6:30 left in the third. Jadyn Whitsitt would put WilmU back within one with 5:17 to go on two made free throws, until Williams found Ansah on the block for the layup to give the Wildcats back the lead, 44-43, forcing Dominican into their first timeout of the half.
Out of the timeout, WilmU continued their run, scoring nine straight points to extend their lead to as big as 10 with 2:58 left in the third, but the Chargers were able to get some stops to go on an 11-4 run to end the quarter down three.
Kasha Andrews got the layup to go for the first shot of the fourth quarter to give Wilmington a 59-54 lead, but that would be the final two points the Wildcats would score until 4:59 left in regulation, helping Dominican go on a 14-2 run, retaking the lead, 67-59. A deep ball from LaShyra Williams put the Wildcats back within four, before a made free throw made it a 68-65 ballgame with 3:36 to play.
WilmU could not find the back of the net however, until Kiara Eubanks netted the next point on a free throw with 1:23 to go, but the Chargers would score five straight points, including three from the line to extend their lead to 10 with 42 seconds left in regulation.
LaShyra Williams led the Wildcats with 22 points, going a perfect 8-8 from the foul line, with six rebounds. Emily Ansah was a threat in the post, securing the double-double with 17 points, and 10 rebounds. Jadyn Whitsitt added 12 points, four assists, and four steals as Kiara Eubanks pulled down nine rebounds.
The Wildcats will head to Chestnut Hill this Wednesday to take on the Griffins for a South Division matchup. Tip-off is set for 6:00 p.m.