Offense Rules as Women's Basketball Falls to West Virginia State
Institute, W. Va. – On Saturday, the Wheeling University Women's Basketball team (5-15, 5-11) went on the road Saturday to face West Virginia State. The offense ruled the game early on, but the Cardinals just couldn't keep up as they fell 114-75. The Cardinals scored 20+ points in two of the four quarters on the night, but the Yellow Jackets offense was just a little bit stronger in the end.
The offensive battle began right from the start as the two teams scored a combined 64 points over the first 10 minutes of play. It was the Yellow Jackets who would flex their offensive muscles first with back-to-back three-pointers to start the game. They scored nine of the first 11 points of the game and held a 9-2 lead over the first minute and a half of the game. Junior Jacqui Hinesmon would get Wheeling going with a bucket and two free throws that brought the score to 12-6. West Virginia State kept the offense going throughout the quarter, and built a 20-8 lead as we reached the five-minute mark. However, the Cardinals kept it close racking up 17 points over those final five minutes of the first quarter and bringing the score to 39-25.
Lauren Calhoun and Hinesmon would help Wheeling score the first four points and cut the Yellow Jacket lead to 10. Calhoun racked up six points over the first two minutes of the second quarter and Wheeling cut the deficit to 44-33. After having so much offense early, both teams would go silent over the next four minutes with only four points being scored, all by West Virginia State. Juniors Emily Holzopfel and Taylor Cullen each hit layups at the halfway point of the quarter, making the score 54-37. However, for the second straight quarter, West Virginia State would eclipse the 30-point mark in the quarter. Wheeling would score seven points over the final five minutes and went into halftime trailing 70-44.
Even though they trailed by 26 after the break, Wheeling continued to battle and started the third quarter off on a 6-2 run. Calhoun began the scoring with a layup before Shanley Woods hit a big three-pointer to get the offense going. Freshman Ally Ziegler was held to just two points in the first half but got it going in quarter number three. She scored eight points in the quarter and brought herself to 10 points on the day. The Cardinals offense scored 20 points in the quarter for the second time on the day and finished 30 minutes of play with 64 points. However, The Yellow Jackets countered with 21 points of their own and led 91-44 as they headed to the fourth quarter.
After a game that saw both offenses hit their stride, it was the defenses that led the way in the fourth quarter. Each team hit just a single bucket for the first three minutes of the quarter with Shanley Woods scoring for the Cardinals. The Cardinals would have their lowest outputs of the game in the fourth quarter with Wheeling scoring 11 points in those 10 minutes. When all was said and done, it was West Virginia State that secured the victory 114-75. Wheeling battled against one of the top teams in the conference for the second time this season. The Cardinals had a pretty good day from the floor, shooting 46%, and added a 50% mark from the free-throw line. Their offense had a strong day and they will try to keep that going the rest of the way.
Lauren Calhoun continued her strong junior campaign, leading the way with 19 points on the night. She was also able to continue her double-double streak going, grabbing her sixth straight double-double with a team-leading 12 rebounds. Calhoun was one of three Cardinals to finish in double digits on the day as Shanley Woods and Ally Ziegler each added 10 points on the day. Woods was hot from three-point range, shooting 50%, while Ziegler was efficient, making five of her six shots on the day. With the loss, Wheeling now moves to 5-11 in Mountain East Conference play and looks to get momentum back on their side as they head back home Wednesday.