ALLIANCE, Ohio - Junior McKayla Binkley scored a career-high 33 points, but the University of Mount overcame a 14-point halftime deficit to defeat the Wilmington College women's basketball team 79-77 in Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) action on Saturday afternoon.
The Quakers led for all but 37 seconds in the first half. Wilmington, thanks to a layup from Kennedy Lewis and a triple from McKayla Binkley, led 25-18 after the first 10 minutes. The Purple Raiders cut the deficit to a single point (30-29) with 6:27 to play in the first half.
It was at that point that Wilmington put some distance between itself and Mount Union. The Quakers outscored the Purple Raiders 17-4 including two three-pointers from both Kelly Noll and Elise Carpenter to take a 47-33 lead into halftime.
The Quakers would maintain a healthy lead through the middle of the third quarter when Mount Union flipped the script. Just as Wilmington had to end the previous quarter, the Purple Raiders ended the third on a 16-4 run to get within a single point (61-60) after 30 minutes.
Another McKayla Binkley triple midway through the fourth quarter put the visitors up 72-65, but a layup from Hailey Peoples-O'Neil tied the game 75-75 with 1:42 to play. McKayla Binkley missed on the ensuing possession, but got her own rebound and scored to break the tie. With under a minute to play, however, Elena Rauhe scored and was fouled. She missed the potential go-ahead free throw, but a Wilmington turnover gave Mount Union back the ball with 33 seconds to play. After a missed shot and offensive rebound, Peoples-O'Neil scored the game-winning basket with six seconds left.
Wilmington shot three percentage points better (41-38) than Mount Union from the field, but the Purple Raiders made four more field goals (31-27) and took 16 more shots. The Quakers countered with a 9-of-22 (40.9 percent) performance from three-point range and also won the rebounding battle 49-47.
McKayla Binkley led all scorers with 33 points on 12-of-22 shooting from the field and a perfect 7-of-7 from the charity stripe. Lewis added 15 points and four assists while Noll and Carpenter both had nine points and at least six rebounds.
A trio of Purple Raiders – Zanny Sauter, Rauhe and Peoples-O'Neil – all scored in double figures including Sauter's 19 points that led the team. Sarah Hessell grabbed a squad-best 11 rebounds.
Wilmington (9-8, 5-5 OAC) looks to rebound at Ohio Northern University on Wednesday.