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Juniata women's hoops falls to Wilmington in Holiday Classic

(Posted December 29, 2010)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Juniata College was held to 27 percent shooting from the floor while Wilmington College (Ohio) dominated on the boards as the Eagle women's basketball squad dropped a 59-52 decision to the Quakers in the opening game of the 2010 Juniata Holiday Classic, Wednesday afternoon at the Kennedy Sports + Recreation Center.

Freshman forward Kate McDonald (Pennsylvania Furnace, Pa./State College Area) led Juniata with 13 points on 5-of-10 shooting from the floor, far-and-away the top shooting effort by any of the Eagles. Senior forward Jen Hnatuck (Mechanicsburg, Pa./Trinity) logged 10 points and hauled down a team-high six rebounds.

Sophomore guard Natalie Glinsky (Indiana, Pa./Indiana) dished out four assists, while junior guard Ashton Bankos (York, Pa./York Catholic) notched a pair of assists to go with her eight points.

Wilmington's Olivia Waters and Brianna Peters both recorded double-doubles for the Quakers (4-6), with Waters posting 19 points and 14 rebounds while Peters finished with 10 points with 11 boards.

The Quakers (4-6) shot 48 percent (25-of-52) from the floor, buoyed by a 15-of-26 effort (57.7%) mark in the opening half. Wilmington more than doubled Juniata's rebounding total, outworking the Eagles on the boards 56 to 27.

Juniata fought to stay close to Wilmington through most of the first half, and trailed by two, 21-19, at the 9:18 mark of the frame. The Quakers responded with a 9-1 run to briefly extend their lead into double digits, and went into the locker room with a 32-26 lead at the break.

The two teams traded the lead twice in the opening minutes of the second half, and the game remained a one-possession contest until LeAnn Topp's layup gave the Quakers a 45-40 lead with 11:32 remaining in the game.

A Hnatuck jumper at the 7:39 mark brought Juniata to within three points, 47-44. Wilmington answered with back-to-back layups by Andrea Anderson and Bethany Ahrens to take a 51-44 lead at the 3:27 mark, as Juniata struggled to find its shooting touch.

Hnatuck's free throw at the 1:49 mark cut the Wilmington lead to six points, 51-45, and broke the Eagles' nearly six-minute long scoreless streak. A McDonald layup with just under a minute showing on the game clock gave Juniata its first bucket in a seven-minute span, but proved to be too little, too late for Juniata.

Defense was the lone bright spot for Juniata; the Eagles forced Wilmington into committing 31 turnovers, leading to 20 Juniata points.

Juniata will face 11th-ranked University of Mount Union in day two action at the 2010 Juniata Holiday Classic. Tip-off is scheduled for 3:00 p.m.

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.