The Kentucky Wesleyan College women’s basketball team made it to the NCAA Division II Tournament but couldn’t hang with the the nation’s top ranked team Friday night in an 88-57 loss to No. 1 Drury University.Despite the loss the loss, Wesleyan still produced a record amount of wins this season, and they only lose one senior to graduation this spring.
The Panthers (24-8), like they have all season, were able to start fast. Kelsey Ivers and Keelie Lamb opened the game with back-to-back layups, but Drury (32-0) sparked their offense with defense and they went on a 15-0 run over the next six minutes.
Drury finished the first quarter with a 26-9 lead and went into halftime holding a 47-25 advantage. The Panthers were forced into 25 turnovers on the night by a Drury team that leads the country in forced turnovers.
Jasmine Shelt gave the Panthers a spark in the second half, and she finished with 11 points on 5-of-6 shooting. Drury did all its damage in the first half in building a comfortable lead.
The Panthers’ perimeter shooting was kept in check as they converted on 5-of-18 three-point baskets. Kaylee Clifford finished the game with 12 points in 18 minutes of work. Lamb added 10 points and 4 rebounds. Drury outrebounded the Panthers 40-26.
Wesleyan won the Great Midwest regular season title this season before falling in the conference tournament final. They also notched 24 wins, a program best, which included an impressive 16-0 record at the Sportscenter.