Playing their first home game in nearly a month, the Wiley College women’s basketball team used defensive pressure to pull away in a 98-41 rout over the University of the Southwest Friday in a Red River Athletic Conference game.
The Lady Wildcats (11-3, 4-2 in RRAC), who are receiving votes in the NAIA Top 25 poll, used a press defense midway through the second quarter – which turned a four-point lead into a 15-point advantage. Wiley College forced 18 turnovers in the first half which led to 22 points and a 36-21 halftime lead. The Lady Wildcats forced 38 turnovers – with 30 by steals and led to 54 points.
“For whatever reason we have to go into certain types of presses to have movement on the defensive end,” Walker said. “We got into our press defense and that turned the game around.”
Lisa Nealey was on the receiving end of several fast break layups and led all scorers with 24 points. She was an assist short of a double-double with nine and contributed six steals. Wiley College didn’t leave the game unscathed as two starters suffered injuries. Alexis Bernstine got knocked down in the first half and didn’t return in the second half – after putting up a team-high eight rebounds. Ty Colquitt collided with a teammate in the second half and left the game. She finished with 11 points, 1 assist and two steals. Walker said both players will be OK.
“Bernstine is going to be fine, she just had a headache,” Walker said. “Ty was a little dizzy. Neither one of them have symptoms of a concussion.”
Wiley had two players that didn’t suit up. The Lady Wildcats bench made huge contributions as it outscored Southwest 53-16. Malachi McQueen shot nine for 12 and hit a 3-pointer for 19 points. She also contributed three steals and two rebounds. Jimelliah Price scored 11 and made 7 of 10 free throw attempts. Kendra Carolina scored eight points and recorded four assists and three steals.
The Lady Wildcats host Langston at 5:30 p.m. Saturday and look to snap a three-game losing streak in the series.
“We gave away two games to Langston last year,” Walker said. “We were ahead in the last two minutes. They got the best of us. We are going to capitalize on the win tonight as well as Langston swept us last year. We are going to piece together an entire game to get the win.”