C-SC women overcome slow start offensively, power way into Heart tourney quarterfinals

Kenzie 1

Culver-Stockton College guard McKenzie Lathrom scored 20 points to lead the Wildcats to a 61-52 victory over Grand View in the opening round of the Heart of America Athletic Conference Tournament. | Photo courtesy C-SC Athletics

DES MOINES, Iowa — The Culver-Stockton College women’s basketball team’s ability to find some offensive rhythm enabled it to survive and advance in the Heart of America Athletic Conference Tournament.

Trailing by a point after shooting just 26.9 percent from the field in the first quarter, the fifth-seeded Wildcats went 8 of 16 from the field in the second quarter to take a five-point halftime lead and carry that to a 61-52 victory over fourth-seeded Grand View on Wednesday night at Sisam Arena.

C-SC (19-10) advances to face top-seeded Central Methodist at 7 p.m. Friday in the Heart Tournament quarterfinals in Fayette, Mo.

The Wildcats shot 50 percent or better from the field in both the second and third quarters and took a four-point lead into the fourth quarter. C-SC went 9 of 10 from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter to maintain its edge.

McKenzie Lathrom, who was named the Heart’s Newcomer of the Year and a first-team all-conference selection, paced the Wildcats with 20 points. She was 7 of 13 from the field, 3 of 7 from the 3-point arc and 3 of 4 from the free-throw line.

Katie Webb chipped in with 11 points, while Nevaiah Bell-Tenner came off the bench to score 10 points. The Wildcats outrebounded the Vikings 33-27 with Kiana Ortiz grabbing a career-high 12 boards.

C-SC forced 18 Grand View turnovers, turning those into an 18-11 advantage in points off turnovers.

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