FAIRBORN, Ohio – A 21-9 third quarter proved to be the difference as the Wright State women’s basketball team clinched a share of its first-ever Horizon League regular-season title Sunday with a 62-52 victory over Milwaukee at the Wright State Nuttter Center.
The Raiders jumped out to a 7-2 lead just two minutes into the contest, only to see the Panthers eventually go in front 15-13 on a Jenny Lindner basket in the final minute of the first quarter.
Lexi Smith, though, put WSU back ahead 17-15 with a layup and two free throws to close out the period and the margin grew to 26-19 on a Symone Simmons layup at the 5:04 mark of the second quarter.
From there, however, the rest of the half belonged to Milwaukee with an 8-0 run, six by Steph Kostowicz, to give UWM a 27-26 halftime lead.
The Panthers shot 44 percent from the field in the first half compared to 33 percent for the Raiders.
Kostowicz extended the Milwaukee lead to three on a pair of foul shots to start the second half before Wright State answered with 17 straight points over a nearly seven-minute span, seven of those coming from Smith, to make it 43-29.
WSU led 54-40 on a Mackenzie Taylor three with 5:59 remaining in the game, only to see the Panthers use a 12-4 run to cut the deficit to 58-52 at the 1:27 mark.
UWM would get no closer, however, as the Raiders tallied the final four points of the game on two foul shots each by Chelsea Welch and Taylor.
The win clinched a share of WSU’s first-ever regular-season league title with Green Bay as each finished with 15-3 records.
Wright State shot 44 percent for the contest, 56 percent in the second half, while Milwaukee shot 39 percent overall, 33 percent after halftime.
The Raiders also led 36-30 in points in the paint and 19-8 in points off of turnovers.
Smith led all scorers with 21 points while Emily Vogelpohl had 13 points, Welch 12 and Taylor 11 for WSU.
Wright State (23-7, 15-3 Horizon) will be the #2 seed for the Horizon League Tournament, which begins Friday at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit. The first action for the Raiders will be on Saturday, March 4, against the Northern Kentucky/UIC winner at 2:00.