Washington Evening Journal
111 North Marion Avenue
Washington, IA 52353
CARLINVILLE, Ill. - After four losses to begin the year, the Iowa Wesleyan women's basketball team scooped up its first victory on Saturday in a St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference doubleheader at Blackburn College. The women knocked off Blackburn 85-78, and the men lost 81-61.
The two women's teams punched back and forth throughout the first three quarters. The Tigers led 19-18 after one quarter, 38-35 at halftime and 55-53 after three periods.
Blackburn tied the game at 55-55 on a pair of free throws in the first 30 seconds of the fourth quarter. The Beavers eventually took a 61-59 lead with 6:06 remaining.
The last lead the Blackburn women had was a 64-63 advantage, which they held until Iowa Wesleyan's Sydney Farrar converted on a layup with 4:33 remaining. That layup kicked off a 7-0 run, which put the Tigers up 69-64.
Blackburn had the game down to three points on a couple different occasions, the last of which came on a 3-pointer that cut Iowa Wesleyan's lead down to 81-78 with 18 seconds remaining. Morgan McCrea and Hannah Sykora each hit a pair of free throws in the final 15 seconds to help Iowa Wesleyan secure its first women's basketball win.
McCrea had 22 points and six assists in the victory. Anija Simmons finished the night with 19 points and six rebounds. Farrar had 13 points. Asantee Tillman scored 10. Sykora had nine, and both Taylor Wiatrak and Chris Heimann finished with six.
The Tiger men had a rough night offensively. Iowa Wesleyan trailed Blackburn 40-26 at halftime and never got within 14 points in the second half.
Alex Dentlinger led the Tiger men with 16 points and seven rebounds. Kaleb Cresswell had 11 points. Jarryd Fernandes scored nine. Marvin Saintolien and David Seber scored eight points apiece. Sy Sanchez scored four. Jett Tjaden had three, and Jared Arellano scored two.
The Tiger women are now 1-4 overall and 1-0 in the SLIAC. The men are 1-4 overall and 0-1 in conference play. Both teams host Westminster on Wednesday night.