Bethune-Cookman staves off Jacksonville comeback in 68-63

Courtesy of Bethune-Cookman Athletics

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Winner BCU

JVille24 16 18 63
BCU16 22 15 15 68

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. –  The Wildcats overcame furious Jacksonville comeback attempt in a battle at the charity stripe for their fourth straight non-conference win, Tuesday night at Moore Gymnasium. 

Bethune-Cookman (3-2) jumped on Jacksonville (2-2) quickly to start the contest, jumping in front 9-2. The Wildcats kept the Dolphins off the board for over six minutes as they closed out the first quarter with a 16-5 advantage behind eight early points for Chanelle McDonald

The B-CU barrage continued into the second quarter as Kayla White’s deep three made it 24-9 in favor of the Maroon and Gold.

The Dolphins finally emerged from their offensive funk midway through the second quarter, with three straight baskets prompting a B-CU timeout up 26-15.

A shooting foul with a second left in the half sent Bre’yanna Frazier to the charity stripe as Jacksonville closed the frame on a 16-12 run to head to the locker room trailing 38-29. 

Jacksonville continued to claw back into the game, cutting things to as close as 42-35 on an Edyn Battle pull up jumper midway through the third. Back-to-back trips to the free throw line saw the Dolphins cut it to just six with a minute left, but Chanel Wilson’sbuzzer-beating jumper pushed the Wildcats back to a 53-45 through three quarters of play.

The opening of the fourth quarter saw B-CU scoreless for nearly four minutes of play as Jacksonville came back to take their first lead of the game at 54-53 on a pair of Battle free throws. The Wildcats regained the lead at the 6:09 mark with a pair of free throws from Karianna Woods to make it 55-54, which quickly expanded to a five point lead on a Kerrighan Dunn jumper. 

The back-and-forth continued, primarily from the free throw line, with B-CU seeing their lead climb to six on a D’Shantae Edwardsand-one with just over two minutes to play to make it 63-57. 

That was not all for Jacksonville, as an 7-0 run brought them to within just one again at 63-62 with 45 seconds to play. 

After a JU timeout, Dunn swiped the inbound pass, but could not convert on the layup as Jacksonville took it the other way, sending Saniyah Craig to the line, where she converted one of two shots to make it a one-point game with 19 seconds remaining.

 Jacksonville got a look at a game-tying three, but Battle’s shot went off the left rim as B-CU iced things with two more free throws to cap off a 68-63 victory. 

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The Wildcats will gear up for a trip to South Florida as the Wildcats are slated to take on FIU on Sunday, Dec. 2. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m.

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