ELSAH, Ill. -Westminster women's basketball battled Principia in the squad's last non conference battle of the year, winning 79-55.
The Blue Jays improve to 11-3 overall with the win.
"Any win is a good win," said Westminster Head Coach James Arnold. "I was really pleased with our effort and energy in the second half to pull away."
Westminster got off to a 6-0 start with the first two layups from from Mirrakohl Johnson, but the Panthers quickly recovered with a 7-0 run of their own to take the lead at the 5:27 mark of the first quarter.
Both teams traded baskets for the remainder of the quarer, with Principia taking the 13-12 lead after the first 10 minutes of play.
"We struggled to shoot the ball but we did hit the offensive boards hard and that proved to be the difference down the stretch," said Arnold.
After three lead changes to open the second quarter, Johnson hit two layups to take a four point lead, but the Panthers quickly tied the game at 22 points at the 4:15 mark, with Principia taking another lead with two minutes to play and ending the half with a 28-25 advantage.
A Principia jumpshot to open the third quarter gave their Panthers their biggest lead of the game at five points. Kendahl Adams hit five points for the Blue Jays in the next two possessions, but the Panthers hit four more points to go up 38-30 with seven minutes to play in the third quarter.
Westminster went on an 8-2 run which included six points from Makayla Jackson. Kendal Miller tied the game at 40 with a jumpshot. After two Principia freethrows, Westminster went on another 6-0 run to take back the lead, ending the third quarter on top 46-44.
"MJ played with great energy and Kendal Miller hit some big shots off the bench that we really needed," said Arnold.
The fourth quarter belong to Westminster, outscoring the Panthers 33-11, including eight points from Johnson and seven from Adams.
"The Thursday, Saturday, Tuesday stretch has been really taxing, especially mentally," said Arnold. "It will be nice to get in a quick workout tomorrow and then turn to Greenville prep."
Johnson led all scorers with 24 points and 14 rebounds, followed by Adams with 22 points, eight rebounds, four assists, and three steals.
Westminster returns to SLIAC action Saturday against undefeated Greenville.