The University of the Virgin Islands’ women’s basketball team lost back-to-back games over the weekend to close out the Buccaneers’ three-game road trip in Wilberforce, Ohio.
After avenging an earlier loss to Wilberforce University on Thursday, the Bulldogs turned things around Friday, taking the overall series with a 73-56 victory over UVI at Wilberforce’s Gaston-Lewis Gymnasium.
The Buccaneers then posted their first losing streak of the season, falling to Central State University 92-71 on Saturday in the Marauders’ season opener at Beacom-Lewis Gymnasium.
Wilberforce University 73, University of the Virgin Islands 56: The Buccaneers were in contention to win their second straight over the Bulldogs until losing control of the game in the fourth quarter.
UVI trailed 26-25 at the halftime break and 48-46 after three quarters, only to see Wilberforce (6-4) snap its two-game losing streak by outscoring the Buccaneers 25-10 in the final period.
Kierra Neal scored a game-high 19 points to lead three players in double figures for UVI (5-2). Amber Appiah-Kubi added 14 points and Melea Lovelace had points, and Mia Davis pulled down a game-high 14 rebounds.
Nia McCormick led the Bulldogs with 16 points and E’Taja Thompson had 14 points as 11 players scored for Wilberforce.
Central State University 92, University of the Virgin Islands 71: Another game in which the Buccaneers were in contention before the Marauders began to pull away.
UVI only led once — at 10-9 on Neal’s jumper with 4 minutes, 49 seconds left in the first quarter — but only trailed 25-19 at the end of the first and 42-37 at the halftime break.
However, Central State started to put some distance on UVI in the second half, outscoring the Buccaneers 19-13 in the third quarter and 31-21 in the final period.
Appiah-Kubi scored a season-high 22 points to lead four players in double figures for UVI (5-3), with two players posting double-doubles. Neal had 15 points and 14 rebounds, Kaeani Berry 12 points and 14 rebounds, and Kashay Bass 10 points. Davis also had 10 rebounds.
Four players also finished in double figures for the Marauders (1-0), led by a game-high 23 points from Cathryn Jones. Kenedi London added 15 points, Kailyn Nash 13 points and Ciara Hardy 12 points.
The Buccaneers take the Thanksgiving holiday off before returning to action in mid-December with a three-game road trip through Florida and Georgia.
UVI opens the series against Trinity Baptist College in Jacksonville, Fla., on Dec. 10, then moves to Georgia for the next two games – against the College of Coastal Georgia on Dec. 12 in Brunswick, Ga.; and Truett McConnell University on Dec. 15 in Cleveland, Ga.