ADA, Ohio — In a defensive contest, Ohio Northern University edged Wilmington College 57-52 in Ohio Athletic Conference women’s basketball action at the ONU Sports Center Wednesday night.
Both teams finished under 40 percent from the field. The hosts, who entered the game with a plus-15 rebounding advantage per game, won the battle of the boards 43-37.
ONU is two spots away from being ranked in the D3hoops.com Top 25 Poll.
Jada Pohlen finished with 15 points, five rebounds, two assists and three steals in 26 minutes off the bench to lead Wilmington. Kennedy Lewis added a dozen points, all of which were scored in the first half, as well as seven rebounds, two assists and two steals.
Wilmington (5-3, 0-2 OAC) will host Heidelberg University 4 p.m. Saturday.
The Polar Bears scored on their first three possessions of the game, but a basket from Kennedy Lewis and an old-fashioned three-point play from Brooke Stover kept the Quakers within 7-5. WC went down 11-5 but the Quaker defense held ONU without a field goal over the final 6:21 of the quarter. During that time, Pohlen and Bekah Bowser connected on three-pointers while Lewis added a layup with a foul. WC led at the quarter stop 15-13.
Teams traded baskets to open the second quarter, but then it was the Polar Bears’ turn for a defensive stand. The hosts didn’t allow a point for nearly eight minutes and opened up a 12-point advantage on a Brooke Allen layup with 2:23 to play. Trailing 29-17, the Quakers scored the final seven points of the half as Lewis scored four and Pohlen three.
The Polar Bears opened up a 12-point advantage with 2:29 to play in the third, but Jaylah Captain kept WC within striking distance as the sophomore nailed consecutive three-pointers. The Circleville native also hit the last basket of the quarter to pull the Quakers within 42-36.
Wilmington would get as close as four points (52-48) with a minute to play, but an offensive rebound putback on the ensuing possession gave ONU a cushion it wouldn’t relinquish.