Jan. 3 - BETHANY, W.Va. – In a game which had a combined 57 fouls called and 76 free throw attempts, the Bethany women’s basketball team came up on the short end of an 82-76 decision to visiting Thiel Saturday at Hummel Field House.
Fouls did not play much of a role to start the game, as the Tomcats (6-4, 2-2) scored the first 14 points. The Bison (4-7, 0-3) did not score until a pair of foul shots by senior Susannah Cartland (Harvard, Ill.) with 14:43 to go in the first half and BC would eventually fall behind by a 31-14 count with 7:48 to go before halftime.
Bethany would mount a comeback by hitting their free throws, as they hit 11-of-14 attempts through the rest of half. Senior Kaitlyn McCormick (Wheeling, W.Va./Wheeling Park) also sparked the closing 23-8 run to close the period with 11 markers, including two baskets in the final 12 seconds to bring the Bison within two at 39-37 going into halftime.
McCormick scored on a lay-up 50 seconds into the second half to tie the game at 39, but that was the last time BC would be that close. Thiel answered right back with a hoop from Towanda-Michelle Warren and the visitors never lost the lead again. Bethany cut an eight-point deficit to three at 69-66 on two foul shots by sophomore Kelly Goode (Pleasant Plain, Ohio/Little Miami) with 2:09 left but the Tomcats would pull away at the charity stripe. They drilled 13-of-15 from the line down the stretch to even their conference record at .500 and claim their first win at Bethany since the 2005 PAC Tournament Quarterfinals.
By the end of the game, Bethany had been whistled for 30 fouls and Thiel was called for 27 and a total of six players fouled out (four for Bethany, two for Thiel). The Tomcats were 29-for-41 from the line (71 percent) and also shot 51 percent (26-51) from the field, which made up for 35 turnovers. On the other side, the Bison actually shot better from the free throw line at 80 percent (28-35), but made only 29 percent (24-82) of their shots from the floor and missed all 14 tries from the arc.
Bethany’s offense was led by McCormick, who set one career-high with 22 points, matched another with eight steals and pulled down five rebounds. Freshman Anne Wilson (Saegertown, Pa./Cambridge Springs) was a perfect 10-for-10 from the foul line on her way to 16 points, while sophomore Stacy Goode (Pleasant Plain, Ohio/Little Miami) posted 14 and senior Caelyn DiSanti (Tarentum, Pa./North Catholic) finished with 10. Freshman Renee Shepherd (New Martinsville, W.Va./Magnolia) did not score, but pulled down 12 rebounds in the loss.
Warren led Thiel with 20 markers on 8-for-10 shooting, while Amber Janae Bodrick added 16 and Ashley Davis chipped in 15.
Bethany will return to the hardwood Wednesday night with a contest at Saint Vincent, scheduled to begin at 6 p.m.