Section: Sports

Strong defensive effort propels Ladies past rival Yeowomen

Strong defensive effort propels Ladies past rival Yeowomen

Katie Orefice ’23 shoots over an Oberlin player. Kenyon beat the Yeowomen 55-45. | CAMERON PETERS

Just four days after suffering a double-overtime loss to Hiram College, the Kenyon Ladies basketball team returned home to face off against the DePauw University Tigers. The Ladies were unable to break their now six-game losing streak to the Tigers that dates back to the 2017 season.

On Wednesday, Kenyon put an end to their three-game skid, winning by 10 points against Oberlin College.

In their first matchup against DePauw University, the Ladies got off to a fast start, taking a 16-13 first-quarter lead while converting on an impressive 50-percent shooting mark. DePauw exploded offensively to start the second quarter, forcing the Ladies to take tightly contested shots in an effort to keep the game close. For the remaining three quarters, Kenyon struggled tremendously; the Ladies shot a ghastly 10 for 37 from the field.

DePauw was not much more accurate, only shooting 38 percent on field goals. However, with 10 added points from the free-throw line, the Tigers were able to leave Gambier with a 59-42 victory.

The Ladies scored just six points in the fourth quarter, their second-lowest quarterly total of the season.

The Ladies’ star forward Paige Matijasich ’20 had a mere seven points, ending a 12-game double-digit scoring streak that went back to November.

This game was also the first time Matijasich failed to reach double-digit points in an NCAC game since her sophomore year. The senior captain is averaging 18.5 points and 8.7 rebounds on the season. Kiele Anderson ’21 led Kenyon’s scorers with eight points while shooting three for three, two of which were from behind the 3-point line.

In their second game of the week, the Ladies bounced back with a 55-45 win over Oberlin.

From the start, Kenyon set the tone, relying on their physicality to keep the Yeowomen scoreless through the first five minutes of play. Kenyon yielded Oberlin just 14 points in the first half on just 22.2 percent shooting.

The Ladies struggled offensively in the first quarter but in the second began to find their stride. Just 35 seconds into the quarter, Matijasich hit a 3-point shot, giving the Ladies an 11-8 lead.

The Ladies’ key to success was their ability to move the ball into driving lanes and draw contact repeatedly. 24 of the Ladies’ 55 points were in the paint, and 15 came from free throws.

Most significantly, Kenyon’s defensive pressure led to 10 steals and 17 Oberlin turnovers.

Matijasich and Ellie Schaub ’21 led the way for the Ladies with 12 points apiece. Matijasich also posted a career-high in rebounds with 17. Matijasich’s rebounds were crucial, as the battle on the boards ultimately ended with both teams garnering 36 rebounds apiece.

The Ladies owed a lot to good play in transition.

They outscored Oberlin 21-7 on fast break points, and scored 16 points off turnovers.

Kenyon now sits at 7-12 on the season and 4-7 in NCAC play.

With this record, they sit at sixth in the conference with six games left in the regular season.

The Ladies will look to build on their latest win as they face off against Wittenberg University this Friday in Springfield, Ohio at 2 p.m.


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