ALLENTOWN, Pa. – The Moravian College women's basketball team defeated rival Muhlenberg College, 64-60, Sunday afternoon in the Matte Award game. The Greyhounds improved to 9-0, and is off to their best start in school history.
The Mules would get on the board first with a jumper from junior forward Leeann Lanza. Junior guard Katie O'Rourke came back with a layup of her own to tie it up at two. A three from senior guard Julie Kelly put Muhlenberg up 6-2, but O'Rourke came with a jumper and a layup to knot the contest at six four minutes into the game.
After exchanging baskets a deep three-pointer from junior guard Danielle Brogan tied the game up at 16 with 8:50 remaining in the first half. A three-pointer from freshman guard Emily MacDonnell gave Moravian its first lead of the afternoon at 21-19 with 6:23 remaining in the half. Sophomore forward Leanna Tallamy answered right back with a mid-range jumper to tie the contest at 21 with 6:04 left in the half.
The Greyhounds then went up 24-23, but a three from the corner by senior guard Alita Zabrecky put the Mules on top 26-24 with 2:41 remaining in the first half. A minute later, Brogan hit a jumper to make the score 27-26, Hounds. Muhlenberg would make five free throws in the final 1:12 of the half to take a 31-27 lead into the locker room.
The Greyhounds shot 28-percent from the field while the Mules shot 32-percent from the field in the first half. Muhlenberg held the rebounding advantage at 25-21 while Moravian committed three less turnovers. O'Rourke led the Hounds in the first half with 11 points, three rebounds and two assists while Zabrecky led the Mules with six points and seven boards.
Kelly tallied the first bucket of the second half for a 33-27 lead for Muhlenberg. Junior forward Erin Laney followed with a layup. Sophomore forward Alexis Wright ended the Mules run with a free throw to make the score 35-28, Muhlenberg. Junior forward Laura Jordan then hit a layup, and senior guard Amanda Kreuder hit a jumper to make the score, 35-32 Mules, with 16:14 to play in the game.
Muhlenberg pulled away after points from Laney and junior center Katy Mitton to go up 41-34, six minutes into the second half. Zabrecky and Wright exchanged layups, and a free throw from sophomore guard Hannah Rush put the Mules up by eight at 44-36 with 11:38 to play.
Moravian then went on an 11-2 run over four minutes that put Moravian up 47-46 with 7:40 remaining in the game. It started with a layup from Wright while she was fouled. She converted the free throw for the three-point play. Points from Jordan and O'Rourke capped the run. Mitton gave the lead back the Mules at 49-47 after a layup with six minutes to play. The Greyhounds answered with a three from O'Rourke and a layup from Kreuder for a 52-49 lead.
Sophomore guard Nicole Pepe then hit a rainbow three to tie the game at 52 with five minutes to play. O'Rourke then drove to the hoop while getting fouled. She made one of two free throws to give Moravian the lead back. A jumper from O'Rourke put the Hounds up by three, but senior forward Kate Clawson responded with a layup to cut the Mules deficit to one point with 2:22 to play. Brogan closed the door for Muhlenberg with a three-pointer for the four point lead at 58-54 with two minutes left in the contest. Muhlenberg would fight back but free throws from Kreuder put Moravian up 62-56 with 39 seconds to play, and that was too much to overcome as the Greyhounds won 64-60.
O'Rourke finished with a career-high 23 points to go with her eight rebounds, four steals and three assists. Wright added 15 rebounds, eight points, three blocks, three assists and two steals while Jordan had six points, five boards and three blocks. Kreuder and Brogan tallied ten points and three rebounds while junior forward Ericka Blair had seven boards.
Mitton led the Mules with ten points and four rebounds while Zabreckey had 12 rebounds and nine points. Laney tallied eight points and five rebounds while Kelly had eight points.
Moravian shot 30-percent from the field while Muhlenberg shot 34-percent from the field in the contest. The Greyhounds held the rebounding advantage at 50-48 while the Mules committed two less turnovers.
Moravian returns to the court on Monday, December 31st as they travel to Centenary (N.J.) College. The contest is scheduled for 1 p.m.