OWENSBORO — The Kentucky Wesleyan College women’s basketball team started off the new year the right way, defeating Walsh 59-52 Thursday, Jan. 5. After dominating in the first half, the Panthers survived a second half push by the Cavaliers to escape with the conference victory.
Shaylee McDonald’s imprints can be found all over this game, as she finished with a game-high 17 points to go along with six rebounds. The junior guard exploded in the second quarter, scoring ten of her points on the night in the quarter alone.
The Panthers began the game on an 8-0 run and never looked back, as they never trailed once in the game. Tahlia Walton had a big impact on the game as well, scoring eight in the first to give KWC a 20-13 lead heading into the second quarter.
The second quarter was similar to the first, with McDonald taking over for Walton on the offensive end. The duo headed to the locker room having scored 12 points each, giving Wesleyan a 40-29 lead at the break.
The Cavaliers never went away though. After giving up 40 points in the first half, they held Kentucky Wesleyan to just five points in the third quarter outscoring them 11-5 to cut the lead to five points.
A close fourth quarter throughout, McDonald’s and-one was a huge turning point putting the Panthers up six points. A layup from Corina Conley and late free throws from Shiya Hoosier were enough to outlast the Cavaliers.
Wesleyan brought pressure from the jump defensively, forcing Walsh to turn the ball over 20 times and converting 17 points off of the Cavs’ mistakes.
Walton finished the game with 15 points and eight boards, while Hoosier added 11 along with an array of steals.
The Panthers (9-4, 5-1 GMAC) will be back in action this Saturday at 12 p.m., part of a double-header against Lake Erie.