FULTON, Mo. – The Westminster women's basketball team picked up their first conference win with a 99-47 victory over Iowa Wesleyan. With the win, the Blue Jays improve to 2-4 and 1-1 in conference play.
Westminster got off to a 7-2 start thanks to an Abbie Reece three-pointer and a pair of layups from Mikalyn Callahan. Iowa Wesleyan cut the lead to 7-5 with a three-pointer of their own before the Blue Jays extended the lead to 11-5 with a basket from Reese Arnold and two free throws from Abbie Reece. The Blue Jays remained in the lead until the Tigers scored on a layup to go up 14-13 with 2:01 left in the first quarter. After Abbie Reece gave Westminster the lead back with a layup, the Tigers made a free throw to tie the game at 15-15 with 44 seconds to go in the quarter. Reese Arnold made a jumper to put the Blue Jays back on top and the first quarter ended with Westminster holding a narrow 17-16 lead.
The Blue Jays opened the second quarter strong, forcing five turnovers while outscoring the Tigers 15-0 over the first 3:58 of the period. After the Tigers ended the drought by making two free throws Rei Imamura and Kendal Miller scored on layups to give the Blue Jays a 36-18 lead. The Tigers could not overcome the deficit and went into the half trailing Westminster 42-28.
The Blue Jays opened the second half with a 22-0 run holding the Tigers scoreless until the 4:54 mark in the quarter. The Blue Jays scored 35 points in the quarter while holding the Tigers to just eight points. Reese Arnold led Westminster with 11 points in the quarter followed by Abbie Reece with eight. Iowa Wesleyan committed nine turnovers while only shooting 25 percent from the field in the quarter.
Westminster closed out the game with 22 points in the fourth quarter to win the game 99-47 and earn their first SLIAC win of the season. Eight of the 22 points came from Imamura, who shot a perfect 2-2 from three-point range and 2-2 from the free-throw line.
Abbie Reece was the leading scorer in the game, putting up 18 points after going 5-8 on field goals and 7-9 on free throws. Callahan record a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Callahan also tied with Reece for the team lead with six assists.
Reese Arnold (15 points), Kallee Dowler (13 points), and Rei Imamura (10 points) also scored in double-digits for the Blue Jays. In addition to Dowler, Corrie Reece (nine points), Kendal Miller (seven points) came off the bench to make significant contributions to the Westminster scoring attack.
The Blue Jays will return to action next Saturday when they travel to Eureka.