MOUNT PLEASANT – Jill Ginder (Jr.-Olney, Ill.) scored 22 points and Iowa Wesleyan College shot 54.9% from the field in a 77-62 win over William Penn University in both teams’ Midwest Collegiate Conference opener at Ruble Arena.
The Tigers built a big lead in the second half but had to withstand a Penn rally before finally putting the game away in the final minutes. IWC won its second straight game and improved to 4-6 overall, while the Lady Statesmen dropped to 7-6 overall.
Wesleyan dominated the game in some areas but was lacking in others, which resulted in a closer finish than the Tigers would have preferred. IWC made 28 of 51 shots for the game, including 70% of its shots in the second half, and also out-rebounded Penn 41-32.
The Tigers committed 29 turnovers, though, a big part of William Penn’s 41-19 advantage in points off turnovers. Wesleyan also allowed 18 offensive rebounds, in all resulting in the visitors taking 19 more shots than the Tigers.
IWC used a 12-0 run late in the first half to break open a close game just before halftime. Jessi Beachey (Jr.-Fisher, Ill.) and Melanie McCreight (Jr.-Winfield, Iowa) combined for all of the points in the run as the Tigers took a 32-19 lead just before halftime, en route to a 36-24 lead at the break.
The margin continued to grow in the second half, ballooning to 20 points on several occasions and getting as large as 21 points when Anna Jones (So.-Cornell, Ill.) scored on a layup for a 60-39 lead with 8:38 remaining in the game. The Lady Statesmen would come back, though, as the turnovers piled up for Wesleyan. IWC committed 19 turnovers in the second half and Penn closed in, getting as close as 64-59 with 4:20 left after a jumper by Raven House capped a 12-0 run.
The Tigers finally finished the deal by outscoring WPU 13-3 the rest of the way. Ginder had seven of the final nine points and the Lady Statesmen made just one field goal over the final four minutes.
Ginder scored 16 of her 22 points in the second half, making eight of 14 field goals in the game. Beachey scored 15 points and Angela Brinkmeyer (Sr.-Hubbard, Iowa) provided a boost off the bench with 11 points, including three three-pointers. Jones led the team in rebounds (eight) and assists (nine), while Sheray Brown (Jr.-Detroit, Mich.) added seven rebounds.
The Tigers limited William Penn to 37.1% shooting, as the Lady Statesmen made 26 of 70 field goals. Christa Subbert, Chandra Melaragno and Samantha Darley all tied for scoring honors for Penn with 11 points each.
IWC continues an early season break into conference play when it travels to Dubuque on Saturday to face Clarke College. Game time will be 1 p.m., and a live audio broadcast will be available at www.iwc.edu/onlinemedia.
Box score IWC 77 WPU 62