SAN JUAN, P.R. -- WKU allowed just eight points in the final 15:46 and closed the game on a 33-8 run to post a 66-46 win over Belmont in the Puerto Rico Classic at Coliseo Guillermo Angulo in Carolina in San Juan.
The Lady Toppers were dominant in the second half, shooting 61.9 percent from the field, including 3-of-4 from behind the three-point arc. Junior Alexis Govan had 20 points, nine rebounds and seven assists to pace the Lady Toppers who also got 21 points and seven rebounds from junior Chastity Gooch. Senior Bianca McGee chipped in 14, including 12 in the second half, to round out the WKU players in double figures.
WKU was playing in San Juan, Puerto Rico for the first time in 20 years, going 3-0 in a three-game swing during the 1993-94 season in San Juan. Today's Dec. 20 contest marked the 20th anniversary of WKU's first ever game in San Juan on Dec. 20, 1993 against InterAmerican.
After falling behind by five early in the second half at 38-33 following a three-point field goal by Belmont's Taylor Mills, WKU scored 12 straight points to jump ahead 45-38 before Belmont cut it to 45-40 with 9:55 left. McGee responded with a big three-point field goal and the Lady Toppers never looked back.
WKU fell behind by five at 13-8 after seven minutes of play before the Lady Toppers went on a 12-2 run over the next four minutes to take a 24-17 lead with 7:30 left. During the 12-2 run, freshman Bria Gaines scored four points and Govan scored the final eight of the run.
Belmont responded to take a late 29-28 lead in the final seconds of the half before junior Jasmine Crawford's three-point field goal from just inside midcourt at the buzzer gave WKU a 31-29 lead at the break. Govan finished the first half with 12 points on 6-of-10 shooting with four rebounds and three assists in 14 minutes as WKU shot 40.6 percent on 13-of-32 shooting.
WKU also hit 10-of-10 free throws in the game.
The Lady Toppers will look to finish non-conference play 8-3 with a win tomorrow against Georgetown. WKU faces the Hoyas at 11:00 a.m. CT on Saturday in San Juan. A win would equal the non-conference output from a season ago despite playing a much more demanding schedule in 2013-14 than 2012-13.