WC women rally, then hold off Heidelberg 68-65

Contributed Report

WILMINGTON – The Wilmington College women’s basketball team overcame a 14-point deficit to defeat Heidelberg University 68-65 in an Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) contest Saturday at Fred Raizk Arena.

Wilmington shot 35.9 percent (23-of-64) as a team compared to 29.9 percent (20-of-67) for Heidelberg. The Quakers also made 7-of-17 (41.2 percent) of their three-point attempts as well as converted 15-of-17 (88.2 percent) from the free throw line.

“I’m really happy to get a win today,” WC head coach Jerry Scheve said. “We really shot our free throws well. That was our big nemesis our last two games.”

Individually, Mackenzie Campbell led all scorers with 20 points to go along with seven rebounds and three assists. Faith Teaford turned in her first collegiate double-double with 15 points and a career-high 12 rebounds while Savannah Hooper also had 15 points.

Kelly Noll, who knocked down four triples in the game, scored 12 points and stole four Heidelberg passes.

“We have a lot of impressive young players,” Scheve said. “Kelly Noll has been growing by leaps and bounds as has Faith.”

Alyssa Riley led Heidelberg in defeat with 18 points in 22 minutes off the bench.

Wilmington improves to 9-8 overall and 4-6 in OAC play with the win. The Quakers will return to action Wednesday when they will challenge No. 10 Ohio Northern University on the road.

Teaford scored the opening basket of the game using a pass from Hooper in the opening minute. The Fightin’ Quakers struggled offensively after the opening possession, however, scoring just four points in the final nine minutes of the first quarter. The Student Princes used that time to drain four three-pointers and take a 12-point lead (18-6) into the second quarter.

Mattie Overmeyer’s basket that opened the second quarter put the visitors up 20-6, but Campbell answered with an old-fashioned three-point play. Another Campbell basket pulled the Quakers within single digits and Noll’s triple at the 7:21 mark made it 22-16.

Heidelberg stretched its advantage back to nine points midway through the second quarter, but Wilmington kept chipping away and a Hooper basket three minutes later got the hosts within four 30-26.

The Student Princes took a 33-28 edge into halftime, and held the lead for the majority of the third quarter until another Noll three-pointer gave the Quakers a 45-43 advantage. Wilmington maintained a two-point lead (50-48) at the start of the fourth quarter, but Heidelberg scored the first seven points of the final period of play.

A Morgan Ritz jumper broke a four-minute scoring drought for Wilmington, but Brooke Beamer’s three-pointer that followed put the visitors on top 58-52 with 6:20 remaining in regulation.

Wilmington countered with a 12-0 run of its own, fueled by four free throws from Teaford. A Hooper three-pointer banked home with 2:26 to play and capped the run to put the Quakers ahead 64-58.

A triple from Aianna Wilson with just over a minute to play cut Heidelberg’s deficit to three points, and after a Wilmington offensive foul, Madelyn Crawford made two free throws with 29 seconds left on the clock. The Student Princes were forced to foul, and Hooper made both of her free throws to put the hosts ahead 66-63.

Heidelberg called its final timeout with 13 seconds to play, and Brittanie Ulmer was fouled attempting a three-pointer with eight seconds left. Ulmer made the first two free throws, and rather than saving his last timeout to advance the ball, Scheve called his last timeout before Ulmer took her last free throw.

The timeout worked, and Ulmer’s free throw attempt to tie the game was too strong. Campbell corralled the rebound, and Hooper made both free throws to seal the win, Wilmington’s second win over Heidelberg by a combined five points.

Contributed Report