UU women hold off visiting UVa.-Wise, 84-78

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Danie Shafer scored 31 points for the second straight game to lead the Urbana University women’s basketball team to a 84-78 win over UVa-Wise Sunday afternoon inside the Grimes Center.

UU (4-5, 4-3 MEC) led by as much as 13 in the second half and shot a season-high 51.7 percent from the field overall to move past the Cavaliers.

Shafer, who ranked 27th nationally in scoring heading into the contest, scored 18 of her 31 points in the first half, while sinking a career-high 12 field goals on 19 shot attempts. It was the fourth game this season the sophomore has topped 30 points.

Senior guard Kennedy Boggs filled the stat sheet with 17 points, four assists, four rebounds, three steals and two blocks. Sophomore Stefanie Davis also reached double digits with 11 points and four assists. In addition, sophomore Jazmyn Haley collected a career-high 11 rebounds and finished a point shy of a double-double.

The Blue Knights were outrebounded by six, 38-32, but used their quickness to outscore the Cavs 18-6 on fast-break points.

Shafer got the Blue Knights rolling in the first quarter, scoring nine straight points to give UU its largest lead of the first half, 19-8, midway through the opening frame. Both teams shot 60 percent or better in the quarter, including an 11-of-17 effort by UU to claim a 27-21 advantage.

UU stayed out in front during the second quarter until the Cavs rattled off a 13-4 run near the end of the period, which evened the score at 41-41 at halftime.

Both teams shot 16 of 31 in the first half.

UVa-Wise (6-5, 2-5 MEC) jumped out to a 47-44 lead after the first two minutes of the third quarter. But back-to-back treys from Shafer and Megan Beachy (seven points) sparked the UU offense.

The Blue Knights never trailed after that, and used the momentum to put together a 15-0 run that lasted four minutes. UU grabbed its largest lead of the game soon after, going up 62-49 with 4:04 in the third quarter.

The Cavs tried to battle back with another strong start to the final quarter, cutting the UU deficit to three at 69-66 with 8:36 left. But, Shafer stepped up with her final trey at the 7:55 mark, which ended the visitors’ run and put UU ahead 72-66. The Blue Knights led by at least four points the rest of the way.

UU returns to action on Tuesday for another league contest versus Concord. Tipoff inside the Grimes Center is scheduled for 5:30 p.m.

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