Women Upset By Delaware State

After what can only be described as a hectic week in Morgantown: finals, controversy surrounding starter Janell Dunlap, and the news coming in that Ashley Dunn and Tehana Geist had quit, the West Virginia University women's basketball team hit the road Sunday to try and put the week behind them and start anew.

Behind as it may be, the new week got off to a tough start itself as WVU dropped a disappointing 59-56 contest to the Hornets of Delaware State in Dover this afternoon.

Outside, a cold, wintry mix brought snow, ice, and rain from the air. Inside, Hornets guard Mandy Clark rained down three-pointers from NBA range and the Mountaineers let the ball slip and slide en route to committing 30+ turnovers.

It became evident about three quarters of the way through the first half that WVU would not be able to get a firm grip on the game. The majority of scoring came from the outside as an inside rotation of Michelle Carter, Latitia Williams, and Meg Bulger struggled to get moving.

The Hornets slowed the Mountaineers offense with a stifling full court press, leading to a whopping 21 turnovers for the first half. It was Clark who broke the game "open" for the Hornets, hitting three shots from behind the arc in the final five minutes to make the halftime score 30-27.

The second half began much the same way as the first ended. Tameka Nugent hit a field goal and Clark buried another three to pull the Hornets out to a game high lead of eight at 35-27. Then, the game took a turn for the Mountaineers as Williams and Sherell Sowho both found their strokes, closing the gap to 41-40 with ten minutes left.

But, as WVU just seemed to get hot, the Delaware State defense picked up the pace again, forcing more turnovers and turning the game into a stalemate very reminiscent of the first half. West Virginia managed to come back from three down to force a tie with 50 seconds remaining and had a good opportunity to take the win as time expired, but Williams had a layup roll off the rim to force overtime with the scored tied at 52.

West Virginia managed to tie the score at 54 in overtime, but the defense couldn't keep its hands out of the cookie jar. The Hornets scored all seven of their points in overtime from the free throw line, while West Virginia was only able to score one meaningless bucket with two seconds left to make the final 59-56.

Clark scored a game-high 26 points to lead the Hornets. West Virginia was led by Kate Bulger with 19 points. Latitia Williams was the only other Mountaineer in double digits, scoring 12.

West Virginia returns to action Tuesday afternoon at Northwestern. Tipoff is set for 1:00 p.m.

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