EDMOND, Okla. -- The Lady Blues gave up the lead on a Central Oklahoma 3-pointer to start the second half but regained the advantage two minutes later and kept it the rest of the way in a 68-52 win Saturday at Hamilton Field House.
The win improved the Lady Blues to 8-2 overall and 2-0 in the MIAA. They'll play their second of three straight on the road Thursday at Fort Hays State as they continue a stretch of six of the next seven games away from home.
Laura Kinderknecht reached the 20-point mark for the third time in five games with 21. She hit 5 of 10 3-pointers and added six rebounds and three assists. Sierra Moeller started her first game of the year in place of Tiara George for health reasons and added 13 points and five rebounds. Stormye Everett added five steals, five rebounds and six points off the bench.
Playing in the first ever game at MIAA newcomer Central Oklahoma after the two had met the previous three times in the NCAA tournament, Washburn only trailed briefly at the start of each half. The Bronchos opened the game with a two-pointer but Washburn turned that around and took an 18-8 lead at the 14:20 mark.
UCO then went on an 8-0 run to get within two before Washburn ended its five and a half minute scoring drought with a lay-up from George, her only two points in four minutes off the bench. The Bronchos (8-4, 1-3) got as close as one point away from WU four times in the first half and went into the locker room down 29-28.
The Bronchos opened the second half with a 3-pointer by Rachel New and Kinderknecht answered it with her own 3. UCO went back up by one with two free throws but a lay-up from Moeller put Washburn back up by a point and started a 12-0 run that built the lead to 44-33 at the 14:58 mark.
A 3-pointer by Casyn Buchman at 10:41 gave Washburn a 14-point lead, its biggest of the day. A 6-0 UCO run later got the Bronchos within six at the 6:14 mark and then neither team scored for nearly four minutes. UCO had three turnovers and four missed shots in trying to cut Washburn's lead.
Kinderknecht ended the scoreless streak with a 3-pointer that put Washburn up 59-50. A three-point play for UCO erased that but Laura McMullin answered with a lay-up with 1:13 to put Washburn back up by eight. The Bronchos went on a 5-0 run after that but Buchman's free throw with six seconds remaining gave Washburn a two-possession lead.
The Lady Blues shot 41 percent in the game and 40 percent from 3-point range. Central Oklahoma was 37 percent overall and 33 percent from long range.Washburn won the rebound battle, 36-32 and each team had 19 turnovers.
Central Oklahoma was led by Savannah Hamilton with 14 points. Birtney Morgan added 10.
Dana Elliott led Washburn with seven rebounds and five assists.