West Palm Beach, FL — Mid-major forces Stetson and Western Kentucky did not disappoint on the first day of the West Palm Beach Invitational. Led by Tashia Brown (24 points, six rebounds), Ivy Brown (12 points, 12 rebounds, three assists) and Raneem Elgedawy (13 points, 10 rebounds), the Lady Toppers took down a talented Hatters team by a final score of 66-58 to move to 7-3 on the year while Stetson drops to 6-6.
The two squads have had monster 2017 non-conference slates, including opponents like No. 25 Iowa, No. 2 Notre Dame, No. 8 Texas, No. 12 Florida State and No. 16 Missouri, who Western Kentucky stunned in its first game of the season.
It was to no surprise it was just a one point game at halftime with the Lady Toppers leading 24-23. It was also to no surprise that there wasn’t just one player that stood out through the first 20 minutes — it was a combination of many.
Western Kentucky had six players score with senior T. Brown leading the charge with eight, while the Hatters had three players with six points (Kennedi Colclough, Brittney Chambers and Shania Meertens) and one with five.
While Stetson jumped ahead with a Chambers 3-pointer and fast break bucket to open the second half, Western Kentucky turned it around quick to go up six, 40-34, and force a Hatters timeout with three minutes to go in the third.
The balanced attacked definitely continued as both teams each had three players in double-figure points heading into the final 10 minutes of action. Colclough and Chambers both rattled off 16 points and Meertens finished with 12.
T. Brown and I. Brown were ultimately the difference makers and both handfuls for the Hatters, as they combined for 36 of the team’s 66 points (more than half of the team’s production) and 18 of the team’s 35 rebounds. Perhaps the most quiet performance of the afternoon was Western Kentucky’s Elgedawy who, along with I. Brown, posted a double-double.