BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – On the strength of a strong second quarter, WKU pulled away from Marshall and kept the Thundering Herd at bay down the stretch to claim a 73-57 victory inside E.A. Diddle Arena on Saturday afternoon to close the team’s three-game C-USA homestand.
Ivy Brown led all scorers with 22 points on the afternoon, followed closely by Tashia Brown’s 20 points, marking just the second time this season that the Lady Toppers have had a pair of 20-point scorers in the same contest. Kendall Noble completed the trio in double figures with 17 points.
Kyvin Goodin-Rogers and Ivy Brown each hauled down a team-best seven rebounds, and both Noble and Micah Jones dished out a game-high six assists. Rounding out her well-balanced statline, Noble also added five steals on the day.
Shayna Gore led Marshall with 15 points and was joined in double figures by Kiana Evans (12) and Talequia Hamilton (10). Hamilton had a double-double with 10 rebounds, and Gore led the team with four assists on Saturday.
WKU jumped out to an early lead over the opening two and a half minutes, scoring the first seven points of the day. Noble notched the first basket of the afternoon just five seconds after the tipoff, and Goodin-Rogers kept the stretch going with five points of her own. Marshall’s Hamilton finally got the Thundering Herd on the board with a layup at the 7:26 mark to cut the deficit to 7-2.
Marshall fired back with a big run of its own, outscoring the Lady Toppers 8-2 over a two-minute span to slash WKU’s lead to just one point. Three different Thundering Herd players scored during the burst, capped by Khadaijia Brooks’ five straight points. Brooks’ three-pointer with 4:52 to play in the quarter left WKU with only an 11-10 advantage.
After managing to tie the game at 13-13, Marshall could close no further in the first quarter as WKU carried an 18-16 lead after the first 10 minutes.
WKU lost its advantage for the first time on the afternoon early in the second quarter on Evans’ shot from beyond the arc to give Marshall a 19-18 lead. From that point, however, the Lady Toppers held Marshall to just seven more points in the second frame, outscoring the Thundering Herd 22-7 over the final nine minutes of the first half. WKU ended the quarter on a 7-0 run to take a 40-27 lead into the locker room.
Throughout the third quarter, WKU maintained its double-digit lead, fighting off a charge from Marshall over the final three minutes. Gore’s three-pointer with 3:26 to play cut WKU’s lead down to just 12 points, but Jaycee Coe responded with a triple of her own to rebuild the 15-point cushion. The Thundering Herd tallied the final four points of the frame to trim WKU’s lead to 54-43 heading into the final 10 minutes.
Behind strong shooting in the fourth quarter, WKU would not allow Marshall any closer than 11 points down the stretch. Noble opened the quarter with a three-pointer from the left side, and Tashia Brown almost immediately followed with another shot from deep to increase the lead to 17, 60-43.
Marshall pulled within 13, 68-53, with 2:43 to play, but the Lady Toppers finished strong to close out the 73-57 victory, their ninth over the last 10 games.
WKU will continue C-USA play on the road next week with a pair of contests at UTEP (Thursday, 8:05 p.m. CT) and UTSA (Saturday, 2 p.m. CT) on the docket. The Lady Toppers lead the all-time series against the Miners 2-1 and are knotted at 1-1 against the Roadrunners. WKU split games against the two sides last season, defeating UTSA 72-65 but falling against UTEP, 85-78.
How to Follow the Lady Toppers: For complete information on WKU Lady Topper Basketball, visit WKUSports.com or follow the program via social media @LadyTopperHoops on Twitter, @LadyTopperHoops on Instagram and on Facebook at facebook.com/WKUWomensBasketball.