February 16, 2013

Verica scores career-best 14 points; SU ends regular-season with 66-57 win at Wesley

DOVER, Del. – Junior Kelsey Verica scored a career-best 14 points with a single-game high of three long-distance shots as the Salisbury University women's basketball team ended its regular season with a win over Capital Athletic Conference opponent Wesley College, 66-57.

Salisbury (14-11, 7-5 CAC) and Wesley kept the opening minutes of the contest close as the teams exchanged baskets with neither team leading by more than a bucket.

Wesley (3-22, 0-12 CAC) would take its final lead of the afternoon, 15-13, as Karen Wearden's jumper from Jazmine Miller gave the Wolverines the edge with 10:30 to play in the half.

The Sea Gulls then went on a nine-point spurt starting with sophomore Courtney McManus' three from classmate Maggie King. Freshman Julia McLaughlin hit two-points from the free-throw line before converting a jumper and layup.

McManus finished the contest with 12 points, nine coming from three-point range, and added four assists and three rebounds. McLaughlin pulled down five boards and went 4-for-8 from the floor for 10 points and three steals.

With 1:22 left in the half, Verica pulled up and hit a three from McManus as SU built its lead to 36-22.

The Wolverines would sink a shot of their own from behind the arc from Miller and then Rachelle Allen put two in off the glass and converted one of two free throws to move Wesley within eight, 36-28, as the teams entered halftime.

In the second half, Verica scored nine of her 14 points, going 5-for-9 from the floor in the contest. 

The closest Wesley would get to SU was after Pez Scott hit a three-pointer in the first minute and a half of the second period, moving the Wolverines within six, but SU's offense took a commanding 49-33 lead, going on a 10-point run and never looked back.

Salisbury shot 41.7 percent from the floor in the second half, 43.6 percent for the game.

Wesley would put together a 13-point unanswered run late in the second half, but the Sea Gulls held on for the win.

Sophomore Anna Hackett led the Gulls with 16 points while the Wolverines were led by Miller with 18 points and four threes. Hackett has now surpassed 750 points with the effort for 757 career points.

The Sea Gulls now look toward conference play, beginning on Tuesday, Feb. 19. Salisbury is seeded fourth in tournament play and will host fifth-seed St. Mary's (Md.) College. Check www.suseagulls.com for game time as it becomes available on Saturday evening. 

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