WKU Women’s Basketball: Lady Tops thrash Belmont 77-46 in home opener

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. — The WKU women’s basketball team earned a 31-point win against a Belmont team that received a vote in the latest AP Poll. The Lady Toppers defeated the Bruins, 77-46, in Diddle Arena on Wednesday night behind double-digit performances from four different players including a 24-point display by Dee Givens.

“Tonight, I thought they played within themselves on the offensive end. They were unselfish. That’s why Dee Givens had a great night, because the team played well. We had Whitney Creech and Sherry Porter step up and make big shots at Mercer, so now you can’t just guard Dee Givens you have to guard the whole team. That makes us better.”

WKU improves to 2-1 on the season and 9-3 all-time against Belmont. The Lady Toppers handed Belmont its first loss of the season, dropping the Bruins to 2-1 on the year.

Givens led all scorers with her 24 points. She filled out the stat line with six rebounds and five steals on the night as well. She moved up WKU’s all-time scoring list into 27th place with 1,178 career points and she now has the seventh most career 3-pointers in WKU history with 172.

Whitney Creech reached double figures for the fourth straight game, dating back to last season. She had 15 points on the night along with six assists. On the season, Creech is 4-8 from beyond the arc, outdoing her 2-10 mark for all of last season.

Sherry Porter added 12 points, including a pair of 3-pointers. She also had seven rebounds and four assists in the game. Raneem Elgedawy was the final Lady Topper in double figures, scoring 11 points along with seven rebounds and four blocks.

Once again, WKU jumped out to an early lead this time taking a 12-2 advantage into the first media timeout. The Lady Toppers would go on to outscore Belmont 22-8 in the first period.

The Bruins were able to cut the game to single digits in the second quarter with a 9-0 run, but Creech and Givens splashed three-straight threes to put a stop to the run.

The Lady Toppers used a 12-0 run beginning in the third quarter and stretching to the fourth to push the lead into the 30-point range.

WKU forced Belmont into 24 turnovers on the night, while only making nine of their own. That’s the fewest for WKU since only making seven miscues against Rice last season (Feb. 7).

Belmont’s 46 points were the fewest for the Bruins since a 45-38 win at Middle Tennessee in November of last season. Forty-six is the fewest points WKU has allowed since holding Morgan State to 43 last season.

The Bruins came into the game shooting 41.3 percent from 3-point range on the season, but WKU held them to 13.3 percent (2-15) on the night.

WKU’s three opponents so far this season were a combined 83-19 last season and all three teams reached the NCAA Tournament.

WKU will be home for the next two games with Central Michigan and Little Rock coming to Diddle Arena in the upcoming games. WKU will face Central Michigan on Sunday at 2 p.m. and then Little Rock on November 24 at 2 p.m.