After ending the regular season with a pair of victories against the College of Wooster and Hiram College, the Ladies basketball team advanced to the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) semifinals with another victory against Wooster on Tuesday.
Kenyon’s offensive exploded with a season-high 77 points against the Fighting Scots as the Ladies ended up winning by a score of 77-60. The Ladies overwhelmed the Scots from the start as they scored 30 points in the first quarter alone.
Sharon Hull ’19 led the surge as she scored 21 points on 13 shots. Hull was one of four players to reach double-digit point totals in the game. Griffin Tullis ’18 scored 19, Jessica Gerber ’19 dropped 14 and Paige Matijasich ’20 finished with 10. The Ladies were also able to set their season-highs in both field goals and three-point shots in a single game with 30 and 14, respectively.
Against Hiram, Matijasich started strong, scoring the first six points of the game, and ultimately finishing with 17 points. Another key contributor was Tullis, who totaled 10 points on eight attempts. Tullis grabbed six rebounds and three assists in the game.
The Ladies were able to defeat the Terriers by a score of 54-44, which clinched them the No. 2 seed in the conference tournament and home-court advantage in their first game. The Ladies finished the regular season with an overall record of 20-5 and a conference record of 13-3.
In the first round of the NCAC tournament, the Ladies, as they did two games prior, dismantled Wooster by a score of 63-30 to advance to the semi-final round. The Ladies’ defensive players were the stars of the game, forcing 26 turnovers and limiting the Fighting Scots to less than ten points in every quarter. However, the Ladies committed 18 turnovers, a recurring struggle over the past few weeks.
There has been an uptick in turnovers over the past two weeks. In the last two games of the regular season, the Ladies committed 32 turnovers, increasing their turnovers per game to 14.4. Currently, the Ladies rank fourth in turnover margin with a +0.92. Two weeks ago the Ladies’ turnover margin was at +2.
Kenyon boasts the second-best three-point percentage in the conference, only behind DePauw, and the third-best field goal percentage. The Ladies also know how to play the other side of the ball. The Kenyon defense ranks within the top three in scoring defense, three-point defense, defensive field goal percentage and rebounding margin.
The Ladies will face Oberlin College in the NCAC semifinal on Friday for the right to play in the NCAC final on Saturday.