GOSHEN, Ind. -- An explosive start to the second half paced the top-ranked Indiana Wesleyan University women's basketball team to a 68-45 victory Saturday at Goshen (Ind.) College.
The Wildcats opened the second half on a 31-6 run to make a five point halftime lead into a 62-32 advantage. During 11-minute stretch, IWU scored on 8-of-10 possessions and then finished with points in 5-of-6 possessions.
Despite a dominating performance in the second half, Indiana Wesleyan struggled to stay ahead of Goshen in the first 20 minutes. Indiana Wesleyan led a majority of the opening half but there were eight ties and six lead changes.
Goshen (3-15, 0-6 MCC) guard Sam Hawk drilled a 3 with 4:37 left in the first half for the final tie of the game, 23-23. IWU scored the next five points and would hold on for a 31-26 halftime advantage.
Indiana Wesleyan (17-1, 6-0 MCC) came out of the break a different team as IWU scored 31 of the first 37 points in the half. Senior center Krystal Stoneking scored six of the first nine points in the half and had eight points total during the run. Stoneking completed play with a game-high 24 points on 11-of-15 shooting.
Post play on the offensive end was huge for the Wildcats. Joining Stoneking down low with large point totals was junior forward Paige Smith with 14 points off the bench. Stoneking and Smith were the only Wildcats in double figures.
Indiana Wesleyan also saw a lot of production from the guards. Junior Claire Freeman earned nine points and seven assists while freshman Emma Stahl added six points, five rebounds, six assists, and six steals. Senior Ashley Brooks contributed seven points, six boards and three takeaways.
That patent Wildcat defense was on display again Saturday as the Maple Leafs shot 29.6-percent (16 of 54) from the floor and had 24 turnovers. IWU limited GC to just eight assists while earning 21 steals.
Indiana Wesleyan returns to Luckey Arena for their next contest which is set for 7 p.m. on Wednesday, January 11 against Grant County rival Taylor (Ind.) University.