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Westminster basketball: No. 4 Westminster women cruise to 72-49 win at No. 17 Carroll

The No. 4 Westminster women’s basketball team won its ninth-straight game by taking a 72-49 decision at No. 17 Carroll in a Frontier Conference game at the Carroll P.E. Center on Saturday night.

Westminster (18-2, 8-1 Frontier) trailed 9-7 just more than six minutes into the action before taking over the game with a 19-0 run in the next eight minutes. Shelby Ellsworth scored 11 of her game-high 15 points during the spurt as the Griffins held Carroll (15-7, 6-3) to six missed shots and five turnovers during the run.

The Griffins held Carroll to 21.4 percent shooting in the first half and only allowed six made baskets. The nation’s scoring defense leader limited the Saints to 31.9 percent shooting for the game as they held the opponent to less than 50 points for the seventh time in the last eight outings with the only other game going into double overtime.

Ellsworth scored her season-high points on 6-of-14 shooting while grabbing five rebounds and getting three assists. She helped a Westminster team that shot 45.3 percent from the floor while making a season-best 94.1 percent (16-of-17) at the foul line.

Mika Pinner had another strong showing off the bench for the Griffins with 14 points and a pair of threes. Tia Pappas added 12 points and nine rebounds, and Amanda Hacking finished with 10 points.

Westminster grabbed 11 rebounds at the offensive end and recorded 12 assists on 24 made field goals. The Griffins forced Carroll into 12 turnovers with four steals, including two from Amy Krommenhoek.

Cassidy Hashley and Bailey Snelling finished with 13 points apiece to lead Carroll.

The win sends the Griffins home for the next three games and maintains their one-game lead in the Frontier Conference race over Montana State-Northern and Great Falls. They clinched a spot in the conference tournament and lowered the magic number to clinching a home game to two.

Westminster is back in action on Feb. 14 at 2 p.m. MT, when it hosts Montana Western in the Behnken Field House.