JACKSON, Tenn. - 11/2/2009 - The top ranked Union University Lady Bulldog basketball team opened the 2009-10 season with a 96-69 win over No. 14 Columbia (Mo.) College. Union trailed by as many as 11 points in the early going, but rallied to take a 43-37 lead.
Columbia opened play with a three pointer from Whitney Widaman to spark a fast start for the Lady Cougars. With 14:27 left in the first half, a basket from Rachel Oswald pushed the Columbia lead up to 11 (17-6), their largest of the game.
Union slowly started to cut into the lead and then at the 6:52 mark, Union senior Kaitlin Dudley sank two free throw to tie the game at 30-30. It was not until the 4:40 mark that Union was able to take their first lead, 33-32, thanks to a Dudley three pointer. Union closed out the half with a 10-5 run, capped off by a Jessica Graves three pointer at the halftime buzzer.
Union dominated the second half, exploding for 53 points. Over the first 10 minutes of play, Union pushed their lead up to 19 points, 68-49. Columbia quickly cut the lead down to 12 points, but could get no closer. Union, behind 46 percent second half shooting from three point range (5-11) and 60 percent shooting from the field in the final 20 minutes, extended the lead to as many as 28 points.
Union was led by Dudley with 24 points and Zeinab Chan with 18 points and 17 rebounds. Lavanda Ross and Christina Ray added 14 and 12 points respectively. Union shot 53 percent from the field, 36 percent (9-24) from behind the arc and 64 percent (9-14) from the free throw line. Union outrebounded Columbia 54-28 in the game.
Columbia was led by Denise Rosario with 13 points, while Rachel Oswald and Kristi Wilderson added 12 points each. Whitney Widaman scored 10 points. Columbia shot 38 percent from the field, 29 percent (5-17) from three point range and 64 percent (14-22) from the free throw line.
Up next for Union will be a home contest on Friday, November 6 at 4:00 p.m. versus St. Catharine (Ky.) College. Homecoming at Union will be on Saturday, November 7 with Union’s women playing at 2:00 p.m., followed by the men at 4:00 p.m.
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