Cincinnati and West Virginia were road winners Wednesday night as just two games were on the league schedule. The Bearcats topped Marquette 64-52, while the Mountaineers held off USF 55-52.
Cincinnati (11-11, 2-7 BIG EAST) evened up its record on the year and has won two in a row. Sophomore guard Dayeesha Hollins led Cincinnati with 22 points for her fourth 20-plus point game of the season.
“That win at Syracuse really got us going confidence-wise and getting off that losing streak,” said Hollins. “Getting a taste of victory got us going and playing as a team. We were coming in to play at a place that’s really tough to play at. Marquette is a team that’s really big and athletic. Somehow the last couple of games, we’ve been finding a way to win – by executing half-court defense and holding this team to 52 points.”
Senior teammate Bjonee Reaves added 18 points as she and Hollins combined for more than half of the team’s points. Despite shooting only 30 percent (10-of-33) in the first half, the Bearcats shot a season-best 57 percent (12-of-21) in the second half.
Marquette (12-10, 3-6 BIG EAST) sophomore Katherine Plouffe recorded a double-double with 13 points and 13 rebounds while freshman Arlesia Morse pitched in 12 points.
In Tampa, Fla., redshirt-junior Ayana Dunning paved the way with a double-double as West Virginia (16-6, 6-3 BIG EAST) held on for a win over USF (12-11, 4-5 BIG EAST) at the USF Recreation Center. Dunning finished with 15 points and a career-high 17 rebounds for the Mountaineers. Redshirt-sophomore Christal Caldwell added 10 points. WVU shot 64-percent from the free throw line (23-of-36) while USF shot 68-percent (15-of-22).
West Virginia held a 51-28 edge on the glass, including a 14-5 mark on the offensive end. WVU outscored the Bulls 13-5 in second-chance points.
Senior Jasmine Wynne led the Bulls with 16 points and 10 rebounds.
Senior Andrell Smith’s 3-pointer capped a late 9-0 run by USF, making it a 2-point game with 1:02 remaining. But the Bulls’ late comeback attempt fell short as the Mountaineer defense held tight and Asya Bussie came down with a rebound, keeping USF from having a final possession.
BIG EAST teams return to action on Saturday with seven games.
Material from interviews, school websites, the Associated Press wire service as well as league and team sources was used in this report.