BATAVIA, Ohio — The University of Rio Grande outscored the University of Cincinnati-Clermont in all four quarters and cruised to a 103-77 victory over the Cougars, Saturday afternoon, in women’s basketball action at the Cougar Dome.
The RedStorm completed a season sweep of their hosts, upping their record to 10-7 in the process.
UC-Clermont dropped to 2-3 with the loss.
Rio Grande jumped to a 27-14 lead after one period and extended its lead to as many as 17 points in the second stanza before settling on a 50-35 advantage at the intermission.
UC-Clermont did manage to close the gap to 10 points after a three-pointer by Ashley Moore made it 52-42 with 7:54 left in the third quarter, but the RedStorm blew things open by blitzing the Cougars with 17 consecutive points over the next three minutes and taking a 69-42 lead following a layup by sophomore Hailey Jordan (Columbus, OH) with 4:46 remaining in the period.
Rio’s lead twice reached 28 points later in the quarter, including 73-45 after an offensive rebound and putback by freshman Caitlyn Brisker (Oak Hill, OH) with 3:39 left, but Clermont made things a bit more interesting with a 21-6 run over the next five minutes to draw within 79-66 after another three-pointer by Moore with 8:39 remaining in the game.
However, Clermont would get no closer.
The RedStorm responded with a 10-2 scoring spurt -culminating with a layup by sophomore Regan Willingham (Ashville, OH) with 4:59 left to play — to regain a 21-point cushion and the Cougars got no closer than 19 points the rest of the way.
Willingham led a quartet of double-digit scorers for Rio Grande with 20 points, while Jordan added 16 points and sophomore Lexi Woods (Waverly, OH) finished with 13 points and a game-high 12 rebounds.
Brisker contributed 10 points to the winning effort, while senior Chyna Chambers (Columbus, OH) had a game-high 10 assists and a team-high four steals. Junior Avery Harper (Seaman, OH) blocked a game-high three shots.
Rio Grande finished 42-for-83 from the floor overall (50.6%), while enjoying a 50-29 edge in rebounding and tallying 28 assists on its 42 field goals.
Those figures helped to offset a 14-for-22 showing at the free throw line (63.6%) and 22 turnovers.
UC-Clermont hurt its own cause with 25 turnovers. The Cougars shot 41 percent overall (23-for-56) and went 26-for-33 at the free throw line (78.8%).
Moore led all scorers with 31 points in a losing cause, while also collecting a game-high five steals.
Victoria Brooks finished with 13 points, a team-best six rebounds, a game-high five steals and two blocked shots for UC-C, while Kristi Duncan netted 12 points.
Rio Grande was scheduled to host Grace Christian (Mich.) University on Monday afternoon, but late Saturday night the game was cancelled by the Tigers.
Rio’s next contest now comes on Tuesday evening at Campbellsville University-Harrodsburg. Tipoff is set for 5 p.m.
Randy Payton is the Sports Information Director at the University of Rio Grande.