Virginia Wesleyan nets 14th victory by holding off Hollins

Katie Tassa
Katie Tassa

VIRGINIA BEACH -- Virginia Wesleyan College's women's basketball team snapped a three-game losing skid on Saturday, holding off Hollins University for a 62-59 victory at the Jane P. Batten Student Center.

Balanced scoring helped produce the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) win for the Marlins, led by juniors Nancy Kelly (Phoenix, Md./Dulaney) and Brittany Glasco (Fredericksburg/Massaponax) with 12 points each.  Junior Kerri Taylor (Stockport, England/The Hill School, Pa.) contributed 11 points.

It was an important win for VWC as far as seeding is concerned in the upcoming ODAC tournament. The Marlins improved to 8-6 in the league for the No. 5 spot, moving a game head of Roanoke College, which fell to 7-7 after an 82-72 loss to league-leading Eastern Mennonite University. 

Virginia Wesleyan (14-9) led most of the way in Saturday's game, which was also Senior Day forKatie Tassa (Bristow/Manassas Osbourn Park), but Hollins (6-17) would never go away either.  HU led 4-0 early, but fell behind by as many as 18 points before halftime.  Triples by rookieCrystal Strother (Accokeek, Md./Brandywine Gwynn Park) and Taylor in the final 4:48 helped VWC to take a 41-25 lead into the locker room at halftime.

Hollins came on strong in the early minutes of the second half and rode the scoring of Taylor Catron (Tazewell/Tazewell), Carrie Cox (Lynch Station/Altavista), and Chanci Wright (Eden, Texas/Eden) to cut VWC's lead to 43-36 with 13:52 on the clock.  That scoring run ended there however, as Glasco ripped through a big triple and Taylor followed with a layup to push VWC's lead to 48-36.

Scoring by rookie Alexis Platt (Virginia Beach/Princess Anne), Glasco, and Kelly helped the Marlins to a 58-45 lead with only 3:36 on the clock, but Hollins continued to fight back.

Catron scored 10 points in the final 3:30 as Hollins chopped away at the Virginia Wesleyan.  She hit a pair of triples in the run, and Jewell Paritt (Roanoke/Patrick Henry) hit one, helping Hollins to pull within a 62-59 score with six seconds on the clock.  Kelly, Tassa, and Strother all scored key points for the Marlins in that span to help the Marlins to stay in front.

VWC had the opportunity to ice the game with three seconds remaining, but missed a pair of free throws.  Hollins grabbed the rebound after the second miss, but could not get off a shot before time expired.

Catron finished with 23 points for Hollins, which also received 10 from Wright.  She led all rebounding with 12. 

In addition to scoring 11 points, Taylor helped the Marlins by recording a team-high nine rebounds and passing out a career-high eight assists.

Virginia Wesleyan closes the regular-season home slate on Wednesday, Feb. 19, hosting the Eagles of Bridgewater College in conference play at 6 p.m.