FORT WORTH – Jenna Cooper scored 20 points, Payton Brown 18 and Kaylee Edgemon 15 to lead the second-ranked Wayland Baptist Flying Queens to a tight 77-75 victory over Texas Wesleyan in the Sooner Athletic Conference opener for both teams here Saturday afternoon.
Wayland (3-0, 1-0 SAC) led by 15 points, 71-56, early in the fourth quarter before the Lady Rams (0-2, 0-1), picked fifth in the conference, made a furious comeback, outscoring the Flying Queens 13-2 to pull to within 73-69 with 3:14 left. Texas Wesleyan cut it to two with a bucket with 36 seconds to go and got the ball back with eight seconds left after a near turnover on an inbounds then a missed shot by Wayland.
But the Lady Rams, unable to get a timeout, lost control of the ball as they hurried up the floor, and Wayland tracked it down as time expired.
It was the first game in for the Flying Queens since Nov. 7 when the season was halted due to COVID-19.
The Lady Rams scored the first two points of the game before Wayland rattled off the next seven. WBU led 22-12 after the first 10 minutes, but TXWES wasn’t about to go away.
The Lady Rams went on a 13-2 run to take a 25-24 lead midway through the second period. Wayland put up the last six points of the half – on a pair of 3-pointers by Cooper and Kaylee Rendon – to assume a 40-35 intermission lead.
When Cooper hit a 3 to end third-quarter scoring, Wayland owned a comfortable 15-point, 69-54 advantage. But the Flying Queens had to fight to the end.
WBU hit 10-of-33 3-pointers, including Cooper’s 4-of-9 effort. The Queens shot just five free throws, hitting three, compared to Texas Wesleyan’s 16-of-24 showing from the foul stripe.
Kaitlyn Edgemon’s 10 points gave Wayland a fourth player in double figures. The freshman was one of three Flying Queens with eight rebounds, joined by sister Kaylee and Cooper.
The Lady Rams got 21 points from Makayla Coy, 17 from Alexus Brigham and 15 from Evie Whorley, who had 13 of her team’s 38 rebounds.
The game saw just 15 turnovers, only five by Wayland.
The Flying Queens are back in action Monday in Waxahachie against Southwestern Assemblies of God University. They make their home debut Thursday against Southwestern Christian.