Virginia Wesleyan holds off Washington and Lee for road win
LEXINGTON, Va. -- When the host Washington and Lee University's Generals put the pressure on Virginia Wesleyan College by tying the women's basketball game late in the second half Saturday, the visiting Marlins produced a trio of answers.
Sophomores Andrea Paphites (Virginia Beach/Princess Anne) and Nancy Kelly (Phoenix, Md./Dulaney) and rookie Kelly Jones (Ellicott City, Md./Mt. Hebron) all came through for key scoring plays for the Marlins who went to to post a thrilling 58-55 Old Dominion Athletic Conference victory at WLU's Warner Center.
Rachel Warwick (Herndon/Langley) hit a jumper to pull WLU within a point at 43-43 and Katy Wilson (Chattanooga, Tenn./Baylor) followed with a tying free throw later, but Virginia Wesleyan refused to fold. Paphites and Kelly nailed back-to-back jumpers to post a 47-43 VWC lead, only to see the Generals' Megan Marks (Oxford, Ohio/Talawanda) nail a triple to cut the lead to a point.
Virginia Wesleyan followed with a 9-4 scoring run, led by Paphites with four points and Kelly with three as the Marlins opened a 56-50 lead with 2:15 remaining to be played.
Wilson and Annie Gauf scored to help Washington and Lee cut the gap to 56-53, but VWC senior Rachael Miller (Sterling/Park View) nailed two free throws to repad the Marlins' lead to 58-53 with 14 seconds on the clock. Washington and Lee added a final basket, but time favored Virginia Wesleyan as the Marlins held on for the win.
The victory improved VWC's ODAC record to 8-4, keeping the Marlins tied for third place in the league standings. Virginia Wesleyan improved to 13-8 overall. Washington and Lee dropped to 7-12 overall and to 4-8 in the league.
Virginia Wesleyan never trailed in the contest as Miller hit a three-pointer to open scoring. The Marlins pushed out to a 19-7 lead, helped by timely triples from sophomoreBrittany Glasco (Fredericksburg/Massaponax) and Miller, and led 29-18 at halftime.
The Marlins led 31-21 early in the second half when Washington and Lee rallied. Paige Corvino (Clarendon Hills, Ill./Fenwick) hit eight of the Generals' first 10 points of the half, helping the host team on an 11-4 scoring run that cut VWC's lead to 33-30.
A big triple from rookie Cassie Conley (New Market/Stonewall Jackson) pushed VWC's lead to 36-30 seconds later and the Marlins came up with the scoring answers to Washington and Lee's comebac attempts the rest of the way.
Paphites hit 7-of-13 field goal attempts and led Virginia Wesleyan with 14 points. Conley hit 4-of-4 field goals and finished with 10 points and Miller added 10 more. Virginia Wesleyan outrebounded the Generals 41-30, led by a career-high 13 rebounds from sophomoreKerri-Leeanne Taylor (Stockport, England/The Hill School, Pa.).
Corvino and Warwick scored 15 points each for Washington and Lee, which received another 11 points from Wilson. Marks led the WLU efforts on the backboards with eight.
Virginia Wesleyan returns to competition on Wednesday, Feb. 6, hosting the WildCats of Randolph College in ODAC action starting at 7 p.m. at the Jane P. Batten Student Center.