NEWARK, Del. - - The hot shooting of the Wilmington University women's basketball team allowed the Wildcats to lead wire-to-wire in an 80-71 nonconference contest over Lincoln (Pa.) on Friday afternoon at the WU Athletics Complex.
The Wildcats (5-8) jumped out to a large lead in the first half, shooting 52.6 percent from the floor while hitting 6-of-7 from beyond the three-point arc to jump out to a 48-27 halftime lead. The Lions (3-9) closed the gap by winning the third and fourth quarters by six points each, but the deficit was too large to overcome down the stretch.
The hot shooting began right off the bat for the Wildcats, as they went 10-of-19 from the floor, including 3-of-4 from three-point land in the first quarter. Layups from Macy Robinson and Emma Matthews, followed by free throws from LaShyra Williams quickly put the Wildcats ahead, 6-0.
Matthews hit the first three-pointer of the game before Robinson followed with back-to-back triples to put the home team ahead, 23-12, with less than a minute to play in the quarter. Jocelyn Rodriguez capped the first quarter with an old fashioned three-point play, doubling up the Lions, 26-13, after 10-minutes of play.
The Wildcats continued to extend the lead in the second quarter, as they shot 8-of-15 from the floor, including a perfect 3-of-3 from deep. A Matthews three put the Wildcats ahead, 31-15, before Robinson and Jasmine Lee hit back-to-back treys to give the home team a 39-17 lead. The Wildcats were stuck on 41 points for nearly three minutes of game-time before they rattled off another 7-0, capped by a Robinson three-point play to head into the halftime break leading 48-27.
The shooting cooled off for the Wildcats but their 21-point halftime lead was good enough to hold off Lincoln down the stretch. The Lions won the third quarter, 20-14, before taking the fourth quarter, 24-18, but didn't get the game back to within 10-point until 41 seconds to play. Two free throws cut the Wildcats' lead to 78-69 with 20 seconds left before settling on the final score, 80-71.
Robinson finished with her first double-double of the year for the Wildcats, scoring a team-high 19 points while also grabbing a game-high 13 rebounds. She went 7of-10 from the floor, hitting 4-of-5 from beyond the three-point arc. Lee came off the bench to score 17 points, also shooting 7-of-10 from the floor. Matthews finished with 16 points, shooting 7-of-12 from the floor while hitting 2-of-4 three-pointers. Williams was the final Wildcat in double figures with 13 points.
The win snapped a three-game losing streak for the Wildcats in their final nonconference game of the season. They will finish the 2017 portion of their season with all Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference game, starting on Wednesday at Felician. The women will tip-off at 5:30 p.m. in Rutherford, N.J.