Fourth-quarter play pushes Bridgewater past Ferrum

Ferrum College freshman Aisha Martin (No. 30) goes airborne in an effort to stop a Bridgewater College player from scoring during the first half of Saturday’s Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) women’s basketball contest at William P. Swartz Gymnasium.

FERRUM – Bridgewater College rallied in the fourth quarter Saturday to quash an upset bid by Ferrum College at William P. Swartz Gymnasium by scoring in threes.

The Eagles tallied multiple 3-point field goals and converted multiple 3-point plays during a 14-2 game-deciding surge in the final frame for a 79-65 Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) women’s basketball victory over the Panthers.

Bridgewater (12-2 in the ODAC, 13-8 overall), which ranks near the top of the league standings, trailed 55-50 in the third period and 55-53 at the end of the stanza. The 12-point run at the start of the fourth quarter was a part of a 26-10 overall scoring stand and produced a 10-point, 67-57 lead with seven minutes to play.

Ferrum (3-11 in the ODAC, 3-18 overall), which is battling to finish in the top 10 in the conference and earn a berth in the league’s postseason tournament that goes with it, trailed by five points, 45-40, in the third quarter before responding with a 15-5 surge.

Freshman Aisha Martin scored seven of her 17 points during the run.

The contest featured nine double-figure scorers – five for Bridgewater, four for Ferrum – and three players who notched double-doubles.

Erika Nettles’ double-double of 18 points and 13 rebounds for the Eagles was matched by Arin Bunker, who paced the Panthers with that same stat line.

Also for Bridgewater, Kayla Darr finished with 16 points and eight rebounds, Diamond Huskey netted 12 points, Ahlia Moon totaled 10 points and 10 rebounds and Mary Ruth Shifflett tallied 10 points.

For Ferrum, Jacy Marvin scored 11 points and Kayla Cabiness collected 10.

“It was a tough loss. I thought we really competed hard for three quarters. I feel like we are getting better, but we just haven’t found a way to finish things off,’’ Panthers head coach Bryan Harvey said.

“We are getting 30 to 32 minutes of good basketball and then we have an eight to 10-minutes stretch in everyn game that is the difference right now between winning and losing. We are knocking on the door, but, somehow, we have to break through,’’ Harvey said.

Bunker scored eight points for the Panthers in the first quarter, but at the end of the 10-minute period, the Eagles were ahead by seven points, 22-15.

Marvin tallied eight points during the second stanza, and at the end of the frame, the difference was six, 39-33.

Bridgewater made 35.1 percent (27 of 77) of its field-goal attempts to Ferrum’s 31.5 percent (17 of 54).

The teams committed a combined 51 turnovers – 24 by Bridgewater and 27 by Ferrum – and 42 points were scored off those miscues with the Eagles holding a 26-16 edge.

Also, Bridgewater finished the game with advantages in rebounds (56-42), assists (12-10), second-chance points (27-16), points in the paint (36-12) and bench points (31-18).

“We will keep working and, hopefully, figure it out in the next couple of weeks. I fee like if we can get in the tournament, we can make some noise. I believe that and I think our kids are starting to believe it as well,’’ Harvey said.

“If you have followed us closely this year, I think you can see how close we are,’’ Harvey said.

Ferrum returns to action today against conference rival Hollins University. Tip off in Roanoke is 7 p.m.

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