NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Belmont Bruins routed the UCF Knights 72-37 in the Curb Event Center on Saturday night.
The Knights, who posted a 26-7 record and received an NCAA Tournament at-large bid in 2018-19, were held to 29 percent from the field on 15-of-51 shooting by the Bruins.
Belmont had four players in double-figure points, as senior Maddie Wright fueled the Bruins with 17 points and nine rebounds. Senior Ellie Harmeyer also logged her second-straight double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds in the win.
Senior Maura Muensterman and sophomore Conley Chinn rounded out Belmont's double-digit scorers with 11 points each. Muensterman added five rebounds and four assists on 3-for-6 shooting from deep range.
Junior Courtajia Sanders and senior Sianni Martin led UCF with 10 points apiece, as the Knights were outrebounded by a 46-24 margin on the evening.
The two teams traded points to kick off the first quarter, as Harmeyer knocked down a pair of free throws to knot the game at 6-6 at the 4:01 mark. Sophomore Maddie Cook's pull-up jumper put the Bruins ahead 8-6 with over two minutes remaining in the quarter. A 3-pointer from Chinn and a last-second bucket from Wright gave Belmont a 13-8 lead through 10 minutes.
Muensterman knocked down a pair of 3-pointer to gift the Bruins an 11-4 run just three minutes into the second quarter. Wright capped off the Belmont first half with a jump shot to their advantage to 31-17 going into halftime. The Bruins held UCF to single-digit point totals in each of the first two quarters.
At the half, Belmont held the Knights to a 32-percent clip from the floor, as the trio of Bruin seniors held 23 of the team's points.
Belmont came out hot in the second half, as a fastbreak finish from Chinn sparked a 14-5 run. Chinn capped off the run with a make from beyond the arc at the halfway point of the third quarter. The Bruins went on to outscore the Knights 24-9 in the quarter, as Belmont hit 11 of their 16 attempts to take a 55-26 advantage.
Sophomore Jamilyn Kinney started off the Bruins final quarter with a contested 3-pointer just 15 seconds in. Belmont went on to hold UCF scoreless for the following three minutes. Sophomore Grace Smith tallied her first points of the year with one minute remaining on a deep 3-pointer to put the Bruins over the 70-point mark. A pair of free throw from Kiki Britzmann rounded out the 72-37 victory for Belmont
Overall, the Bruins shot just under a 50-percent clip on the night and stroked 11 3-pointers. The Knights were hindered to just 15-for-51 shooting, as they committed a total of 18 turnovers.
SHUT 'EM DOWN: Belmont has held its opponents to 40 or less points five times under head coach Bart Brooks. Saturday's game marked the lowest point total from a non-conference foe against the Bruins since 2015.
DOUBLING UP: Harmeyer recorded her second-consecutive and 19th-career double-double against the Knights. Overall, she has tallied 36 points and 32 rebounds over the last two contests.
UP NEXT: Belmont travels to Bowling Green, Ky. for a matchup with the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers Wednesday. Tipoff is slated for 6 p.m. CT at E.A. Diddle Arena.