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UVU basketball: Wolverine women earn historic win over UMKC, 61-53

Rebecca MaWhinney (right) passes the ball inside to Sam Loggins (left).
Rebecca MaWhinney (right) passes the ball inside to Sam Loggins (left).
Jay Drowns

Sam Loggins scored a game-high 14 points to lead the Utah Valley University women's basketball team to a 61-53 quarterfinal win at the Western Athletic Conference Tournament at Orleans Arena.

The win is Utah Valley's first-ever WAC Tournament victory as the Wolverines move on in the bracket to take on top-seeded New Mexico State on Friday at 12 p.m. PST.

"It feels good to sit on this podium after a win. After last year when the buzzer went off, we set a goal to advance beyond this first-round game. We reached that goal tonight," head coach Cathy Nixon said. "I am proud of the girls tonight, and I think we played about 37 minutes of good basketball—it wasn't beautiful. Defensively, we had great effort, and Sam was aggressive, and when she does that she is very difficult to stop."

After a back-and-forth first quarter, Utah Valley opened the second quarter with an 8-0 run to take a 25-12 advantage with 6:51 to play until the break. The Wolverines held on to their lead to take a 31-13 lead into halftime.

Utah Valley extended its lead to a 17-point advantage in the third quarter, 37-20, with just less than seven minutes to play in the quarter. The Wolverines then held on to the double-digit lead to take a 46-30 lead into the fourth quarter.

In the fourth quarter, Rebecca MaWhinney hit a breakaway 3-pointer to give the Wolverines their largest lead of the game—a 20-point advantage with 3:45 to play. The 'Roos made a late rally, but it wasn't enough as Utah Valley secured the 61-53 victory.

Loggins scored her game-high 14 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the field. She also pulled down seven rebounds and registered a block in 34 minutes of play.

Mariah Seals and Deijah Blanks were also in double figures with 12 and 11 points, respectively. Seals knocked down 4-of-7 shots from the field, including a shot from long range. Blanks hit 4-of-6 shots from the field.

Georgia Agnew led the Wolverines with eight rebounds, just one shy of her career high. The junior guard also had eight points and a game-high five assists on the day.

Utah Valley shot an impressive 50 percent (23-of-46) from the field while holding UMKC to a 38.8 percent (19-of-49) mark. The Wolverines out-scored UMKC, 40-16, in the paint and out-rebounded the 'Roos, 32-27.

Utah Valley now moves on to the WAC Tournament semifinals to take on top-seeded New Mexico State on Friday. The game will be broadcast live on the WAC Digital Network.