LEXINGTON, Ky. - Transylvania women's basketball routed the Spalding Golden Eagles, 92-55, Saturday afternoon, notching their second win of the season.
"We played better team defense today compared to our first two games," said Head Coach Greg Todd. "We ran the ball at a good pace and had awesome scoring balance."
And balanced, they were. Every starting Pioneer contributed on the court Saturday, each notching double digits in their minutes played.
Junior Nicole Coffman led the team in scoring with 18 points, 16 of which were scored in the second half alone. Coffman struggled from the floor in the first, going only 1-10 from field goal range and 0-3 from three point land. The second half saw a breakout performance, as she went 5-7 from the field and nailed all six free throw shots. Coffman is currently second in the conference in points and points per game and is third in steals with 11.
Junior forward Alex McKenzie made her presence known early, recording her first double-double of the season with 11 rebounds and 13 points. McKenzie went 9-11 from the foul line and 2-5 from the field in her 18 minutes on the court. Sophomore guard Katelyn Smith also made an impact with 16 points, in addition to teammates sophomore Alex Botkin (11) and senior Madisen Webb (10).
Starting off strong, sophomore Alex Botkin grabbed an early Transylvania lead off with a fastbreak jump shot, that set the tone for the game. The Pioneers were relentless on offense, scoring eight fastbreak points and 12 points off turnovers in the first half.
Transylvania peeled ahead early with the help of Smith, who netted 10 points in the first half. In the first seven minutes, the Pioneers went 17-8 thanks to some hot shooting by Smith and McKenzie. A Coffman steal gave Smith the chance to break out for a jumpshot, followed by two additional points from freshman Jordin Fender off another fastbreak, sending the Pioneers to a 19-8 advantage early.
The Transylvania advantage surged to 14 points thanks to free throws from junior center Elizabeth Thomas and Webb with seven minutes remaining in the half. Free throw shooting and a three-pointer by Hannah Neeley sent the lead to 20 points, 41-21, in the remaining minutes. Spalding netted two more, but with one second remaining before half time, Botkin nailed a jumper to send the Pioneers to the locker room with a 20-point cushion.
The 20-point cushion fluctuated only slightly over the course of the game, but the strong Pioneer lead couldn't be shaken by the Golden Eagles.
Bench players aided to the effort in the second half, including sophomore transfer Chelsea Pharris who contributed with seven points, going 3-4 from the field and 1-2 from the foul line.
Coach Todd appreciate the effort by the bench feeling as though they "played much more relaxed today," which allowed them to be more successful, contributing a total 24 points to the final score.
By the final buzzer, Transylvania had secured a 38-point, recording their largest win of the season, 92-55.
The Pioneers will tipoff in their first Heartland Conference match-up of the season, facing the College of Mount St. Joseph in Cincinnati on Wednesday, Dec. 4.