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BISON HOPE FOR REPEAT IN WESTMINSTER REMATCH SATURDAY
Jan. 20 - BETHANY, W.Va. – The Bethany College women’s basketball team (7-9, 2-6) will begin the second half of the PAC schedule Saturday afternoon with a road game slated for a 2 p.m. start at Westminster (4-12, 0-8).
The Bison ended the opening half of the conference slate on a down note, as Washington & Jefferson posted a 75-64 victory at Hummel Field House Wednesday night. The Presidents shot 53 percent in the game and committed just six turnovers, which countered BC’s 31-26 rebounding advantage. Bethany junior Anne Wilson (Saegertown, Pa./Cambridge Springs) scored a team-best 18 points and sophomore Kayla Taormina (Center Twp., Pa./Quigley) went 7-for-9 from the floor on her way to 17 markers.
The first time the teams squared off was Dec. 1 in the league opener for both sides. Bethany streaked to a 31-20 halftime lead and was in front by as many as 17 in the second half, but Westminster trimmed that margin down to five in the final minute. The Bison managed to put the game away with two foul shots in the final seconds to preserve a 60-53 triumph. Sophomore Kayla Taormina (Center Twp., Pa./Quigley) had a huge game by going 8-for-9 from the field, including 4-for-5 from the arc, for a career-high 24, while junior Katelynn Hackathorn (Valley Grove, W.Va./Wheeling Park) chipped in with 17. Westminster was led by Kaitlin McCarthy with a career-best 21 points.
Taormina’s big games against Westminster are becoming a common occurrence. In three career games against the Titans, the 5-8 guard is averaging 19.6 points and shooting 68 percent (21-31) overall, including a blistering 75 percent (9-12) from the arc. In her career, she has scored 17 or more points in seven games and three of those have come against Westminster.
The Titans are also coming into Saturday off a loss, as they suffered a 66-57 defeat to Grove City on Wednesday. In addition to dropping their mark to 0-8 in the league, Westminster also remained winless at home, as they are now 0-5 on their floor. Trailing by six at halftime, Westminster’s comeback hopes were thwarted in the second half by ice cold shooting, as they made just 24 percent (7-29). The offense was led by Emily Dolsak, who scored 15 on 5-of-9 shooting, and Katie Hughes, who was 5-for-8 for 14 points, but the rest of the team made only 10-of-42 (23.8 percent).
Although Westminster ranks 10th in the PAC in field goal percentage (34.2) and three-point percentage (21.7), the Titans are strong on the glass, with the third-best rebounding margin (+4.7) and third-most offensive caroms (15.69) in the circuit. The lone player to be scoring in double figures is McCarthy (10.4) and she is also second in the PAC in assists (4.69), but three Titans rank in the top 15 in rebounding, including Andi Ridge (seventh with 7.1), Dolsak (11th with 6.3) and Hughes (14th with 5.9).