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Dec. 10 - BETHANY. W.Va. –The Bethany College women’s basketball team was within a point of Thomas More in the first half, but the Saints closed the period with a 17-5 run and continued to pull away for an 83-64 victory over the Bison Saturday.

The loss broke BC’s four-game winning streak and leaves the Green and White with a 4-4 overall record and 3-1 in the PAC. Thomas More improved to 6-1 and 4-0 in the league.

The Saints looked like they might start to pull away early in the game, taking a 20-12 advantage before the Bethany bench stepped up. Junior Carly Garneau (Beaver Creek, Ohio/Carroll) scored five in a row and after sophomore Taylor Verrico (Monaca, Pa./Quigley) nailed a trey, senior Kelly Zogran (Pittsburgh, Pa./Thomas Jefferson)  hit two foul shots and a lay-up to bring BC within a point at 27-26.

Thomas More responded with 11 consecutive points and outscored the Bison 17-5 over the final 6:35 of the half to construct a 44-31 lead at intermission. Guard Katie Kitchen scored seven during that final spurt and finished with 14 at the break.

Bison senior center Katelynn Hackathorn (Valley Grove, W.Va./Wheeling Park) knocked down a three-pointer for the first points of the second half, but TMC answered back with 13 straight markers to swell their cushion to 57-34. Bethany was unable to get any closer than 15 the rest of the way and Thomas More, who 53 percent for the game and turned 18 BC turnovers into 29 points, remained atop the PAC standings.

Despite shooting just 33 percent in the loss, Bethany had three scorers reach double figures. Verrico reset her career-high in scoring for the second time in the last three games with 14 off the bench. Junior Kayla Taormina (Center Twp., Pa./Quigley) recorded her second consecutive double-double with 11 points and 10 boards and senior Renee Shepherd (New Martinsville, W.Va./Magnolia) chipped in 10.

Thomas More’s starting backcourt proved to be too much to handle on this day, as Kitchen and Allison Long both finished with 17. Inside, forward Katie Kees added a dozen points.

Bethany will be back at home for its next game on Thursday when it hosts Mount Aloysius in a non-conference fray at 6 p.m.