Dec. 3, 2005
Tempe, Ariz. - Sophomore forward Crystal Kelly pumped in a game-high 21 points on 9-of-12 shooting to lead the Western Kentucky women's basketball team to a 72-41 non-conference win over Holy Cross in the first round of the Wells Fargo Holiday Classic on Friday night at the Wells Fargo Arena on the campus of Arizona State University. Holy Cross has now lost two straight and falls to 2-4 on the season, while the Hilltoppers remain undefeated at 5-0 overall.
Junior center Kaitlin Foley had team-highs in points (19 points) and rebounds (four rebounds) to lead the Crusaders. Her 19 points was also a career-high, surpassing her 18-point mark against Northeastern set earlier this season.
No other Holy Cross player reached double figures.
Western jumped out to a 36-20 lead the half after starting the game on a 10-2 run, in which Kelly scored six points. The Hilltoppers took their largest lead of the half (18 points) after an Ashley Butler jumper at the 9:21 mark, which put WKU up 25-7. Western Kentucky held Holy Cross scoreless for five minutes and 37 seconds before Laura Aloisi broke the dry spell with a triple with 6:23 left to cut the lead to 15 (25-10). Jessica Conte then stole a Hilltopper pass and converted on the other end to spark what would be a 9-2 Crusader spurt, bringing HC within 11 (27-16) with 3:13 to go.....
The Crusaders managed to shoot just 27 percent (7-for-26) from the floor in the first stanza, and were 1-for-9 (11 percent) from behind the arc in the first twenty minutes of play, while Western Kentucky shot 48 percent (15-for-31) for the half. The Hilltoppers also had a 26-8 points-in-the-paint advantage, while forcing 12 Crusader turnovers.
The Hilltoppers continued to dominate throughout the second half, leading by no less than 18 points throughout the final twenty minutes. Western Kentucky shot 44 percent for the game and scored 46 points in the paint. Holy Cross finished the game 15-for-51 (29 percent) and had a season-high 25 turnovers.
Tiffany Porter-Talbert collected 14 points for Western Kentucky, which also got 13 points from Sarah Shouse.
Holy Cross will face Memphis in the consolation game at 6:00 p.m. EST tomorrow night at the Wells Fargo Arena.