ALLENTOWN, Pa. — Muhlenberg used a 9-0 run early in the fourth quarter Saturday afternoon to pull away from Washington, wrapping up its first Centennial Conference win of the women's basketball season, 56-39.
The host Mules avenged a 50-46 defeat in Chestertown in mid-November, when they shot only 22% from the floor.
Washington's women absorbed their third loss in a row to tumble to 6-5 overall, 3-3 in the conference.
Muhlenberg (3-7) led 11-7, 20-19 and 39-32 at the quarter breaks.
Bridget McLaughlin's jump shot with about 11 minutes elapsed, which capped a 10-2 run that bridged the first and second periods, gave the locals their first lead, 12-11.
Muhlenberg scored the next seven points, regaining the lead on a Kassidy Stout jumper with 7 minutes, 41 seconds remaining in the opening half.
Washington led only once more, 21-20, on a Cassidy Quattro field goal just 38 seconds into the third quarter.
Sara Peretti's layup 1:03 later restored the Mules' lead for good, 22-21, and started a 10-4 run.
Holding a slim 33-30 lead with under two minutes remaining in the third, Muhlenberg scored six straight points on field goals by Peretti, Ashley Polera and Emily O'Mahoney — the last two coming off of steals.
After Emilee Cramer's layup on the first shot of the final frame, Muhlenberg ran off the next nine points to increase its lead to 48-34 with 7:31 remaining. Emilie Benton started the 9-0 run with a 3-pointer; a pair of O'Mahoney free throws gave Muhlenberg its first double-digit lead, 44-34, with 9:11 to go.
Washington trailed by at least 10 points the rest of the way.
Freshman Kassidy Stout was so eager to make her first collegiate start that she ran out onto the court while classmate Sara Peretti's name was being announced.
Stout's enthusiasm proved to be justified. She contributed six points, four rebounds, four steals, three assists and a blocked shot in 25 minutes.
Peretti finished with game highs of 12 points and nine rebounds, flirting with what would have been her first double-double.
Seniors O'Mahoney, Benton and Polera (five assists) added nine, eight and seven points, respectively.
At the other end of the court, the Mules held their Centennial rivals to 26 percent shooting (15-of-58). Washington's women came into the game averaging 60.2 points.
Senior Cassidy Quattro led the locals with nine points and eight rebounds. Senior point guard Caitlyn Clark contributed eight points while playing a game-high 33 minutes and freshman Emilee Cramer came off the bench to score seven points.
Sophomore Crystal Jones, who led all players with 13 points when Washington defeated Muhlenberg on Nov. 16, was scoreless in Saturday's rematch.