By: Nick Taflinger, sports information assistant
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - The Bluffton University women's basketball team rolled to their first win of the season as they soared over Ozarks (Ark.) 69-46 on Sunday, Nov. 18. The Beavers improved to 1-2 after week one of the 2018-19 campaign. With the loss, Ozarks (Ark.) fell to 1-4 on the season.
The game was back and forth as the Beavers held a slim 12-10 lead with two minutes left in the first quarter. However, Bluffton went on a 7-0 run to end the quarter with a commanding 19-10 lead heading to period two. The closest that Ozarks would get from there on out was eight points as the Beavers did not slow down throughout the rest of the game. Bluffton pushed its advantage to 33-17 at halftime.
The scoring pace would pick up even more in the second half as both teams netted 15 points in the third quarter. Bluffton outscored Ozarks 21-14 in the fourth period making the final 69-46 in favor of the Beavers.
Bluffton trailed 5-3 early in the game, but after a triple by Nora Hemminger (McComb) that made the score 6-5, the Beavers never trailed again.
Junior Tj Mills (Dayton/Chaminade-Julienne) led the Beavers with 15 points on the day, hitting 6-of-10 from the field to go along with her three steals. Junior guard Breanna Graham gave the Beavers valuable minutes off the bench as she scored 10 points, including two makes from downtown. Other contributors included sophomore Abbie Parkins (Bluffton) who scored nine points while snaring seven rebounds. Freshman Brianna Gillig (New Riegel) added seven points and a game-high eight rebounds. Hemminger bucketed eight points to go with four rebounds and three assists, while fellow sophomore Kylie Brock (Villa Hills, KY/Dixie Heights) hit two three-point field goals to give her six points in the victory.
Cassie Emerson led Ozarks in rebounds with eight, while Kerigan Bradshaw paced the offense with six points as she went 6-of-8 at the charity stripe.
Bluffton hit 23-of-59 from the field (39 percent), while Ozarks connected on just 13-of-48 (27.1 percent). The Beavers knocked down 35 percent of their three-point attempts, going 7-of-20 from distance. They won the rebounding battle, 45-32, and also forced Ozarks into 19 turnovers on the day.
The Beavers will have an opportunity to even their record at 2-2 on Wednesday, Nov. 21, when they travel to Heidelberg University to take on the Student Princes at 6 p.m.