PIKEVILLE, Ky. (Nov. 1, 2016) – In a matchup of two NAIA National Championship teams from last season, the No. 24 Milligan College women’s basketball team came up short to NAIA Division I No. 17 Pikeville University, 96-67, Tuesday night in the teams’ season openers.
Last year’s national championship tournaments saw both Milligan (0-1), which was in the Division II tournament, and Pikeville (1-0), which was in the Division I tournament, qualify as a six seed. While Milligan lost in the first round, Pikeville won three games and made it as far as the semifinals before losing to eventual national champion MidAmerica Nazarene.
Milligan was led by senior Hayley Wyrick who posted a game high 23 points along with four rebounds and three assists. Sophomore Sarah Robinson, last year’s Appalachian Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year, scored 18 points and pulled down eight rebounds.
Milligan and Pikeville battled evenly through most of the first half, with Pikeville leading 20-19 at the end of the first quarter before extending the lead to 49-39 at the intermission. The Bears then came out in the second half outscoring the Buffs 30-8 in the third quarter which put the game away.
Courtney Wilson was the only other Buff to reach double figures in scoring as she had 11 points and five rebounds.
For Pikeville, four players reached double figures with Kelah Eldridge’s 21 points leading the way.
Milligan will be on the road this weekend as the Buffs travel to Columbia College in Columbia, Missouri, on Saturday, Nov. 5. The first home game is scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 16, versus Appalachian Athletic Conference member Tennessee Wesleyan University