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Women's Basketball Starts Conference Season with Win
By: Kevin Meinholz, Sports Information Director
EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (UWECBlugolds.com) - The UW-Eau Claire women's basketball team opened Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) action with a 52-44 win over UW-Oshkosh at Zorn Arena tonight.
The Blugolds have now won six in a row against UW-Oshkosh dating back to 2007. Eau Claire improves to 2-4 overall and 1-0 in WIAC play. UW-Oshkosh drops to 1-4 on the season and 0-1 in the conference.
Eau Claire took the lead right away with a Sarah Bingea (Fr.-Delano, Minn.) field goal and went on to score four more to take a 6-0 lead. The Blugolds held the Titans scoreless for more than three and a half minutes. Oshkosh then proceeded to go on a 6-0 run of its own to tie the game up.
It didn't take the Blugolds long to take the lead back and found themselves up by seven after a 7-0 run. While the Blugolds reached their largest lead of the first half at 3:40 (eight points) the Titans closed the gap to just three after holding Eau Claire scoreless the rest of the half.
While Eau Claire never lost the lead in the second half, the Titans played close and found themselves down by just one four times, with the last time being at 2:13. The Blugolds held strong and did not allow another Oshkosh point and went on to take the eight-point win.
The Blugolds shot 44.2 percent (19-for-43) from the floor, including a 61.1 percent second-half performance. Oshkosh finished 11-for-39 for the night (28.2 percent). The Blugolds outrebounded the Titans 34-25 and had just three more turnovers than the Titans (23-20).
Bingea and Hannah Mesick (Jr.-Chatfield, Minn.) led the Blugolds with 12 points each while Jodi Lindner (Sr.-Neillsville, Wis.) was also in double-figures with 10. Ellen Plendl (So.-Chippewa Falls, Wis./McDonell) finished with a game-high 11 rebounds while Laura Olson (So.-Osseo, Wis./Osseo-Fairchild) had a game-high four assists and Lindner had a game-high three steals.
The Blugolds will be at home once again Saturday for a game against UW-La Crosse at 3 p.m. It will be the first game of a doubleheader as the Blugold men will face the Eagles after the women's game.