Photography by Pete Galarneau, Jr.
Wheeling, W.Va. -- The West Virginia Wesleyan Basketball teams were back in action Monday evening as they traveled to Wheeling Jesuit College to take on the the Cardinals at the McDonough Center in what was their third game in five days. The Lady Bobcats fell at the hands of the Cardinals 70-54, however the Men's team was able to bounce with a 78-74 victory after a tough loss to the nation's number one team, the West Liberty Hilltoppers, Saturday.
For the third straight contest, the Wesleyan Women were able to take a first half lead in to the locker room, unfortunately however, failing to capitalize in the second half and ultimately succombing to a tough defeat. A balanced scoring attack from the Bobcats from the starting five plus the help of Adrian Cunningham's six points off the bench gave Wesleyan a 33-28 edge over the Cardinals at the intermission but 15 second half turnovers mixed with a 50% shooting effort from the Cardinals did not bode well for the 'Cats as they were outscored 42-21 in the period, losing 70-54.
Allie Browne scored 11 of her game high 18 in the second half to hold the Bobcats in the game but a rough shooting perforamance (21%) from the floor made it hard for Wesleyan to make the needed come back. The other lone double figure scorer for the Bobcats was Kacey Johnson as she added 13 points and three assists on the evening.
The Men's affair went quite differently as it was the Cardinals who took a slight advantage after the first period, 36-34, in to the locker room setting the stage for a Bobcat come back in the second half. The 'Cats were led by senior T.J. Thompson as he erupted for 28 points hitting 6-10 from deep and a perfect 8-8 from the charity stripe. Not far behind Thompson was teammate Taylor Price as he crashed in with a team high eight rebounds to accompany his 20 points on a strong 9-13 shooting night, surprisingly the only other Bobcat in double digits.
After the teams basically went blow for blow, with just over 2 minutes in the game, the Bobcats found themselves down four, 69-65 but a Thompson three followed by a defensive stop set up senior Brett Ervin to take the go ahead layup after a Bobcat called timeout with 00:53 left in the game. Clutch free throws and smart play on both sides of the ball would finish off the Cardinals and see the Bobcats improve their MEC record to 5-4 while the Cardinals fall to 4-5.
The Men's overall record improves to 10-6 while the Women's falls to 2-10. Both teams will have off until Saturday as they prepare to host the Urbana Blue Knights. Women will tip off at 2:00pm and the Men will follow at 4:00pm.