The Ladies basketball team solidified their status as a significant force in the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) after beating foes College of Wooster (4-13) and Allegheny College (5-12) last week by scores of 62-55 and 64-54, respectively.
Paige Matijasich ’20 fueled the Ladies with 22 points including three 3-pointers against Wooster. Sharon Hull ’19 poured in 16 points on 7-10 shooting, while Griffin Tullis ’18 dished out a game-high six assists to take down the Fighting Scots. The Ladies finished the first quarter with a nine-point lead but surrendered a 17-point second quarter to Wooster, allowing Wooster to finish the half down only 28-26. Wooster mounted a comeback when Erica Roberts hit a layup to give the Fighting Scots a 33-30 lead with 7:54 left to go in the third.
The Ladies then took control of the game with an exciting 9-0 run capped off by a 3-pointer from Jessica Gerber ’19. The Ladies finished the third quarter on a high note, as Ellie Schaub ’21 knocked down a three to extend the Ladies’ lead to 11. Kenyon was dominant in the fourth quarter, and another 3-pointer from Gerber with 2:23 left gave the Ladies a 12-point lead and sealed Kenyon’s victory.
In their game against Allegheny, the Ladies cruised to a relatively easy victory over the Gators despite a shooting performance below their usual standards. Four Ladies finished in double digit scoring, including Tullis, who filled the box score with 10 points, five rebounds and three steals. The Ladies held Allegheny to just seven points in the first quarter, and a jumper by Hull with 15 seconds left in the half gave Kenyon a 12-point advantage.
The Gators never led during the game, and relied heavily on a 17-point performance from Delaney Arbore to keep the game competitive, though Kenyon remained in control throughout.
Kenyon’s scoring leader Matijasich has anchored the Ladies all year, and credits much of her offensive success to Head Coach Suzanne Helfant. “I’ve gotten a lot more confident in my shot, with my coach allowing me just to shoot when I feel like I can,” Matijasich said. “My coach and teammates always have confidence in me, which helps a lot.”
Matijasich is quick to credit her team’s all-around cohesion as a unit regarding the Ladies’ strengths in the areas of toughness and intensity.
“That’s one of the best things about us,” she said. “We have great team chemistry, and we’re always fighting for each other. We always have each other’s backs.”
On Wednesday night the Ladies faced the Denison University Big Red for the second time this season, and had a much lower scoring affair. The Ladies defeated the Big Red 44-38, despite only shooting 24.5 percent on the game, much lower than their 39.4 percent season average.
The Ladies travel to face conference foe Ohio Wesleyan University on Feb. 3.