Hot Start Lifts Cavaliers to Season Opening Win, 96-66

Hot Start Lifts Cavaliers to Season Opening Win, 96-66

NORTH CANTON, Ohio - The Walsh Cavaliers jumped out to a early lead and never looked back in the home opener on Friday (Nov. 8) night at Alumni Arena. 

Walsh outscored Wayne State 26-8 in the first quarter and nearly went wire-to-wire in the 96-66 win over the Warriors in the GLIAC/G-MAC Challenge. 

Mayci Sales opened the game with a jumper before Wayne State tied the game at two. Following a 2-2 game for six seconds, Walsh pushed the lead to ten with a 12-2 run as Quionche Carter and Alyssa Dean each scored five points. Following the media timeout, five points each by Jamie Halloran and Ty Newkirk plus a layup from Sales made it 26-8 Walsh after the first quarter. 

Newkirk nailed two threes, all part of a 15-3 run that pushed the lead to 30 four minutes into the second quarter. Dean added five points and Sales accounted for four points during the run. The Cavaliers led by as many as 31 but took a 52-24 lead into the locker room at halftime. 

Wayne State scored six straight points out of the halftime break, trimming the lead to 22 with eight minutes remaining in the third quarter. Walsh responded with a 16-2 run as four different players hit three pointers. The Cavaliers gained the biggest margin of the night, 36 with two minutes left in the third period. Walsh led 72-41 after three quarters in the opener. 

The Maroon and Gold shot eight-of-12 in the fourth quarter as they closed out the 96-66 victory. 

Five players carried the load for the Cavaliers as five of the eight that played scored more than 16 points. Sales led with 20 points on ten-of-13 shooting from the floor. Carter added 19 on seven shots and a career-high three treys. Newkirk set a new career-high with 19 points, including career-highs in field goals (seven) and three pointers (four). In her Cavalier debut, Dean set a career-high with 18 points as the Bowling Green transfer made seven shots and a trio of three pointers. Halloran hit four threes and a quartet of free throws for a total of 16 points. 

Lexie Scarton grabbed a career-high seven rebounds, leading the Cavaliers. 

Overall, the Cavaliers shot 56.3% (36-64) from the floor and 62.5% (15-24) from three point land. Walsh made nine of 11 free throws in the contest. 

Wayne State finished with 46.2% (24-52) shooting, and only 23.5% (4-17) from downtown. 

After a night's sleep, the Cavaliers will welcome the Ferris State Bulldogs to Alumni Arena for part two of the GLIAC/G-MAC Challenge on Saturday (Nov. 9). The game will tip-off at 5 PM.