Second, third quarters boost Eagles to GLVC-opening win - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Second, third quarters boost Eagles to GLVC-opening win


University of Southern Indiana Women’s Basketball used dominating second and third-quarter performances to earn a 66-40 victory over host McKendree University in its Great Lakes Valley Conference opener Thursday night.

After trudging through a slow first quarter, the Screaming Eagles erupted for 51 points in the second and third quarters to build a commanding 31-point advantage. USI outscored the Bearcats 24-8 in the second quarter and 27-12 in the third period as it took a 59-28 lead into the final 10 minutes of the contest.

The Eagles (6-1, 1-0 GLVC) pulled away from the Bearcats early in the second quarter as USI used an 11-1 run to break an 8-8 tie. USI used a 7-0 run to expand its advantage to 26-11 later in the period, while a 4-1 run to end the stanza put the Eagles up 32-16 at the break.

McKendree (4-2, 0-1 GLVC), which led 4-0 early in the game, trimmed the Eagles’ lead to 13 early in the second half. The Eagles, however, crushed any hope of a McKendree victory as they used a 15-0 run to increase its lead to 50-22 with just over four minutes to play in the third period.

USI’s lead ballooned to 31 by the end of the third period and as many as 35 in the fourth quarter as the Eagles won their GLVC-opener for the fifth consecutive year.

Senior forward Hannah Wascher (Rantoul, Illinois) led USI with 14 points and 11 rebounds, while junior guard/forward Kaydie Grooms (Marshall, Illinois) chipped in 13 points and five rebounds. Senior forward Tasia Brewer (Terre Haute, Indiana) went 3-of-5 from downtown as she rounded out USI's double-figure scorers with a career-high 11 points.

USI shot just 38.1 percent (24-63) from the floor, but was 18-36 (.500) from the field during the second and third quarters, combined. The Eagles held the Bearcats to a mere 30.6 percent (15-49) from the field and 14.3 percent (1-7) from downtown.

The Eagles also held a 43-32 edge on the glass while forcing the Bearcats into 25 turnovers. USI turned those miscues into 21 points while holding a 19-10 lead in second-chance points.

USI returns to action Saturday at 1 p.m. when it visits the University of Illinois Springfield for a GLVC bout. The Prairie Stars (3-2, 0-1 GLVC) fell to No. 5 Bellarmine University, 66-63, Thursday evening.

Courtesy: USI Media Relations

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