PORTALES, N.M. — TWU guard Rebekah Cluley and forward Ria Pateraki scored in double digits Saturday to lead the Pioneers to 46-40 win at Eastern New Mexico.
Cluley recorded her first career double-double with a game-high 12 points and 10 rebounds. She also handed out four assists. Pateraki added 10 points off the bench, and Toree Mason chipped in with eight points. Taylor Swift added four points, four rebounds and a team-high five assists.
TWU (4-8, 2-4 Lone Star) jumped out to a 9-3 lead in the first six minutes, but the Zias scored six straight points to tie the score. The Pioneers answered with a 6-0 run of their own and pushed the lead to 18-11 with four minutes left in the first half.
TWU held the Zias to four field goals and 16.0 percent shooting in the first 20 minutes and led 21-13 at halftime.
The Pioneers built the game’s biggest lead, 33-17, with 13:29 remaining. Eastern New Mexico cut the deficit to six with less than five minutes to go. The Zias later scored seven consecutive points and trailed by three with 43 seconds left.
The Pioneers hit three of four free throws in the final seconds to seal the win.
TWU finished with 29.8 percent shooting, while the Zias shot 27.3 percent. The Pioneers never trailed and outrebounded ENM 40-37.
“It was a defensive battle, and I am proud of our team for grinding out the victory,” TWU coach Beth Jillson said. “We held the team to just 40 points on the road, and that’s hard to do. They made a run at the end after we went up by 16, but we found a way to win.”
TWU will play host to Abilene Christian at 7 p.m. Wednesday.