NEWARK, Del. - - The Wilmington University women's basketball team hung tough with Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference North Division leading Bloomfield, but the visitors held on down the stretch to take the 62-55 decision on Saturday afternoon at the WU Athletics Complex.
Trailing 52-41 at the end of three quarters, the Wildcats (6-16, 3-11, CACC) held possession with a chance to tie the game in the fourth quarter, but the Bears (12-9, 12-2 CACC) held on down the stretch to give the Wildcats their fourth straight defeat.
The Wildcats scored the first four points of the game and held a 6-2 lead in the first four minutes. But the Bears answered with a 15-7 run the rest of the quarter to take a 17-13 lead into the second frame.
Precious Palmer started the second quarter with a layup before Emma Matthews knocked down a three-pointer to give the Wildcats an 18-17 lead in the opening minute. Bloomfield responded with a 12-0 run of their own, however, taking its first double digit lead of the game, 29-18, on a Bear three-pointer with 3:01 to play before the half. They won the third quarter, 21-17, to lead 52-41 heading into the fourth.
Macy Robinson opened the fourth quarter with a three-pointer and the comeback was on. Matthews followed it up with a made jumper to quickly get within 52-46 with 6:33 to play. Back-to-back layups by Nyree Grant and Matthews brought the home team to within 54-50 before Grant had the game to within a possession with a free throw with 4:05 showing on the clock.
Robinson came up with a steal on the defensive end of the court and had a chance to tie the game with a three-pointer with 3:11 left, but her triple was narrowly off the mark and the Bears came down and made a layup to extend the lead back out to five points. Matthews had a chance to tie the game with 1:22 to play, but stepped into a two-pointer and missed the jumper. The Bears once again came down and put in a layup to extend the lead back out to 58-53.
Matthews led the Wildcats with 16 points on 7-of-17 shooting, grabbing four rebounds and adding five steals. Grant poured in 15 points to go with eight rebounds while adding three steals. Robinson grabbed a team high nine rebounds.
The Wildcats will step out of the CACC for their final nonconference game of the year on Tuesday, as they head to Salem International in Salem, West Virginia. Opening tip is set for 6:00 p.m.