EVANSVILLE, Ind. — Kylee Smith and Sally McCabe had double-doubles, Darby Maggard hit five 3-pointers and No. 22 Belmont, the top seed, opened the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament on Wednesday with an 88-64 win over eighth-seeded Murray State.
The Bears (29-3), who have 20 consecutive victories and 44 straight over OVC foes, play in the semifinals on Friday against the winner of Thursday’s first-round matchup between fourth-seeded Jacksonville State and No. 5 Morehead State.
Smith had 21 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists and McCabe had 19 points and 13 rebounds. Maggard had 15 points and Maura Muensterman 12, also on all 3-pointers, and Jenny Roy had 10 rebounds and eight points. Belmont led 32-25 at the half and shot 62 percent in the second half, making 10 of 18 from distance.
Maggard had three 3’s in the last three minutes of the third quarter, the first coming when the Racers (11-19) had closed within one and the third making it 58-48 at the end of the period. She also opened the fourth with a shot from distance as Belmont won going away.
Brian Bethea had 21 points for the Racers with Ke’Shunan James adding 17 with 11 rebounds.