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No. 2 UAA rolls over Central Washington in women's basketball

  • Author: Beth Bragg
  • Updated: September 28, 2016
  • Published January 14, 2016

The post-game meal was chicken wings. During the game, the Seawolves feasted on Wildcat.

The UAA women's basketball team rolled to its sixth straight victory Thursday night, a 66-42 win over Central Washington sparked by a huge first quarter in Ellensburg, Washington.

The nation's second-ranked team in Division II hoops devoured the Wildcats early, scoring 15 straight points in the first quarter to take command of the Great Northwest Athletic Conference game.

Down 5-4 after two minutes of play, the Seawolves used four steals and impressive depth to fuel a 15-0 run, which carried them to a 19-5 first-quarter lead.

Four players notched steals and five provided points in that decisive stretch.

"It was a good team win for us tonight," UAA coach Ryan McCarthy said by phone as his team headed for a late-night dinner of chicken wings. "I thought we had a really good start to the game and set the tone early. We were able to make our substitutions and control the tempo of the game.

"They were trying to slow it down and take shots in the last 10 seconds of shot clock so it was nice to create some confusion during that time and be able to take advantage of their mistakes."

About the only hiccup for the Seawolves (19-1 overall, 6-1 GNAC) was foul trouble for Keiahnna Engel, a senior guard who spent most of the first half on the bench. She played three minutes in the first half and 13 in all, time enough to get nine points, three rebounds and two assists.

"(She) had a really good week of practice and I was looking forward to turning her loose against Central Washington, but it is what it is," McCarthy said.

As is often the case with UAA, there's always someone else to turn to. In this case, it was senior guard Jessica Madison, who scored all of her team-high 14 points in the first half, which UAA dominated 35-16.

Also stepping up was redshirt freshman Tara Thompson, who came off the bench to play 14 minutes Her on-paper contributions were limited to two rebounds and three missed 3-pointers, but she provided a boost in other ways, McCarthy said.

"She played rally good defense, took shots when she was open like we want her to and made a couple hustle plays that won't show up on a stat sheet," he said. "I was real pleased."

Up 59-26 after three quarters, the Seawolves faded in the fourth quarter, when Central Washington outscored them 16-7.

"I thought we took our foot off the gas pedal a little bit," McCarthy said, "We weren't pressing anymore … and we weren't as aggressive offensively. We got a little complacent and it ended up making the game sloppy, for us anyway."

Madison was one of three double-figures scorers for the Seawolves. Megan Mullings racked up 12 points, eight rebounds, two assists, two steals and a block, Madison added four steals and three rebounds to her 14 points and Jenna Buchanan had 10 points, three steals and three assists. Alysha Devine chipped in eight points and six rebounds.

The Seawolves continue their road trip with a Saturday game against Northwest Nazarene in Nampa, Idaho.

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