BUCKHANNON, W. Va. – Jennifer Alflen drained a pair of dagger 3-pointers late in the fourth quarter to help Urbana University women’s basketball hold on against West Virginia Wesleyan, 77-68, Saturday afternoon inside Rockefeller Arena.
With the win, UU snapped a five-game losing streak while improving to 5-12 (3-11 MEC) on the year. The Blue Knights earned the season sweep over Wesleyan (6-11, 6-8 MEC) and UU holds the all-time series lead, 6-2.
Morgan Mattimore led the Knights with 20 points on 7-of-14 shooting as the freshman couldn’t be stopped in the lane. It was the third 20-point effort for Mattimore, who is now averaging 15.7 points over the previous six contests.
Four others scored in double figures, including Alflen with 15 points on a career-high five 3-pointers (5 of 9). It was a season-best outing for Alflen, who made three deep balls in the fourth quarter, after topping her previous performance against the Bobcats when she put up 14 points on four treys.
In addition, Mikayla Ward registered a season-high 12 points (6 of 7) while Stefanie Davis stuffed the box score with a near triple-double of 10 points, nine assists (career high) and eight boards. Sylvia Hudson chipped in with 11 points and six boards.
The Blue Knights never trailed while outshooting the Bobcats, 53 percent to 38 percent. UU limited the host team to only three made shots from beyond the arc. UU also held a 26-12 scoring advantage in the paint.
UU kicked off the contest by making five of its first seven shots en route to a 36-29 halftime lead.
Wesleyan got to within three points at the start of the third quarter, but UU countered with an 8-2 run to go ahead 46-37 halfway through the period. Shortly after, a pair of Mattimore free throws gave UU its largest lead of 11 points, 55-44, but the Bobcats stayed close to cut the deficit to five after three quarters, 55-50.
The game remained a back-and-forth affair with the teams trading baskets in the final quarter. After UU led 64-57 with six minutes left, the Bobcats slashed the deficit to two points on a layup, making the score 65-63 Knights with 4:21 left on the clock.
With UU’s advantage still two points, Alflen took over with back-to-back threes, including the dagger from the left corner to put the Blue Knights up 73-65 with 2:39 remaining.
UU returns to action on Wednesday at Charleston for the first-ever meeting inside the H. Bernard Wehrle Sr. Athletic Arena.
UU men fall
A late scoring drought diminished any chance of a comeback for Urbana University men’s basketball in Saturday’s 91-70 setback to West Virginia Wesleyan inside Rockefeller Arena.
Both teams entered the matchup with 9-10 records and the Bobcats came out on top to even the season series, avenging an earlier Blue Knight victory in Urbana back on Jan. 5.
UU (9-11, 4-10 MEC) had three players score double-digit points, led by junior Carlas Jackson with 17 on 5-of-11 shooting. DeQuan Abrom netted 15 points while Charles Sweatt-Washington totaled 14 points and a team-high eight boards.
The Blue Knights took more shot attempts than WVWC, but the Bobcats were very efficient by sinking 35 of 60 shot attempts (58 percent). UU finished shooting below 40 percent for only the fourth time all season.
Wesleyan’s Mo Berchie led five Bobcats in double figures with 19 points while dishing out seven assists. Kevin Kagni registered a double-double with 18 points and 11 boards while Luke Layhew had 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting.
UU led 2-0 at the onset, but never regained the lead after a Wesleyan 3-pointer followed. WVWC led by six at halftime, 38-32, and then opened the second stanza with a 9-2 run to go up 47-34.
Tyler Ellis made a 3-pointer to cut the deficit back to six, 52-46, with 12:54 remaining as UU tried to claw back. Then, Jimmy Weinke kept the momentum going with a layup at the 10:28 mark to get the Knights to within three, 57-54, but that’s when UU went cold.
The Bobcats went on a quick 9-2 run and then outscored the Blue Knights 19-6 over the next six minutes to go ahead for good, 76-60.
UU returns to the hardwood on Wednesday for a 7:30 p.m. tipoff at Charleston.