Score: Oral Roberts 68 – Western Illinois 64
Records: ORU (9-7) (2-1); WIU (5-11) (1-2)
Location: Mabee Center – Tulsa, Okla.
TULSA, Okla. – Head Coach Misti Cussen recorded her 100th career win as the Oral Roberts women's basketball team defeated Western Illinois, 68-64, Saturday afternoon at the Mabee Center.
In a battle of toughness, the ORU Golden Eagles topped the Western Illinois Leathernecks in what is the first win over WIU in three seasons. The first half saw both teams turn the ball over for a combined 23 times. The Golden Eagles managed to win both the first and second quarters and take a 35-30 lead in to halftime. Lakota Beatty and Keni Jo Lippe led the Golden Eagles with 12 points each. Despite leading at the break, ORU shot 34 percent in the first half while Western Illinois shot 41 percent.
The second half proved to be a game of grit as the Golden Eagles had their largest lead of the game by 10 early in the third period. After a 14-2 Western Illinois run, the Golden Eagles found themselves in a six point hole with seven minutes to play in the fourth. With 5:42 to play, Keni Jo Lippe scored her fifth three-point bucket of the game to tie 58-58. With 29 seconds to play, Western Illinois took a one point lead until Maya Mayberry scored her lone field-goal of the game and it was a deep ball to put ORU up by two with 17 seconds to go. After a Western Illinois timeout, Katie Kirkhart made the play of the game with a steal off of Annabel Graettinger. Kirkhart stole the ball and scored her only points of the game on a fast-break layup to put the Golden Eagles up by four with five seconds to play.
ORU had a record high 23 offensive rebounds in the game. The last time the Golden Eagles recorded 20-plus offensive boards was in 2017. Regan Schumacher made her first career start and scored six points with eight rebounds, five offensive, and had a career high four steals. Keni Jo Lippe scored a career high 26 points and shot 9-for-22 overall and 5-for-13 from three-point range. Lakota Beatty had 15 points with four rebounds and a career high eight assists. Beatty went 6-for-18 from the field and 3-for-11 from beyond the arc.
Western Illinois was led by Taylor Higginbotham who had a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds on the day along with three assists and two steals. Olivia Kaufmann scored 14 points and nine rebounds. Jinda Guidinger recorded 10 points with seven boards.
Oral Roberts: Lippe led the team with 26 points. Schumacher had eight rebounds.
Western Illinois: Higginbotham scored 16 points along with 10 boards.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
- ORU shot 33.8 percent overall in tonight's game.
- ORU out-rebounded Western Illinois 46-37. The Golden Eagles had 23 offensive boards.
- The Golden Eagles had a 29.7 percent three-point average.
- ORU turned the ball over 20 times, but forced the Leathernecks to turn the ball over 23 times.
- ORU shot 70 percent from the free-throw line (7-for-10).
- Lakota Beatty scored 15 points with six rebounds and had a career high eight assists.
- Regan Schumacher had six points, but led the Golden Eagles with eight rebounds along with two blocks and four steals.
- Keni Jo Lippe contributed with a career high 26 points, six rebounds and two assists.
- ORU had 14 bench points in tonight's game.
- The Golden Eagles capitalized with 21 points off of turnovers and 26 points in the paint.
ORU heads to Fort Wayne, Indiana, to take on the Purdue Fort Wayne Mastodons Wednesday, January 9 at 6 p.m. CST.
For the latest information on ORU women's basketball, follow @ORUWBB on Twitter or go to www.ORUAthletics.com. Fans can also receive updates on the team by downloading the Golden Eagles Front Row App at ORUAthletics.com/frontrow or in the App Store.