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Women's Basketball Knocks Off OAC Leader, Crosstown Rival John Carroll

Junior guard/forward Kara Marshall scored 13 points as BW knocked off OAC-leading John Carroll
Junior guard/forward Kara Marshall scored 13 points as BW knocked off OAC-leading John Carroll

BEREA, Ohio – The Baldwin Wallace University women's basketball team knocked off Ohio Athletic Conference leader and crosstown rival John Carroll University 68-59 inside Ursprung Gymnasium.

Freshman forward Lilly Edwards (Dublin/Coffman) was the Yellow Jackets (12-4, 6-3 OAC) leading scorer for the second consecutive game with 16 points off the bench. Junior Academic All-OAC guard/forward Kara Marshall (Copley/Archbishop Hoban) and junior Academic All-OAC guard Kasey Hughes (Springboro) contributed 13 points apiece. Junior Academic All-OAC guard/forward Mary Schentur (Broadview Heights/Brecksville-Broadview Heights) came up one rebound shy of her first career double-double as she recorded 10 points and nine rebounds. Meanwhile, sophomore forward Sydney Diedrich (Chardon/Gilmour Academy) continued to attack the glass as she pulled down a career-high 13 rebounds.

Junior guard Dani Carlson led John Carroll (11-5, 7-2 OAC) with 14 points off the bench. The two-time reigning OAC Player of the Week, sophomore forward Nicole Heffington, was the team's second-leading scorer with 12 points while senior guard Kahrin Spear rounded out the double-digit scorers with 11 points. Freshman center Olivia Nagy proved to be a force inside as she grabbed 10 rebounds and blocked five shots.

Opening up on a 6-0 run against the conference-leading Blue Streaks gave BW a lot of energy. However, John Carroll was able to taper the momentum with a scoring run of its own, tying up the game at the 4:54 mark and eventually taking a 14-6 lead. The Yellow Jackets were held scoreless for over six minutes of action until Marshall went off on a personal 5-0 run of her own, making the score 14-11 in favor of the Blue Streaks at the end of the first quarter.

BW continued Marshall's run into the second period to regain a lead at 15-14 with 9:02 left on the clock. For the next three minutes, both teams traded field goals and one-possession leads before John Carroll used an 8-0 run to build up to a seven-point lead, 31-24. Senior Academic All-OAC forward Rachel Womeldorf (Lewis Center/Olentangy) scored the final points of the half with a layup at the 1:31 mark as the Yellow Jackets trailed 31-26 at the intermission.

After BW struggled to hit from beyond the arc in the first half, Hughes and Schentur came out and hit back-to-back three-pointers to start the Yellow Jackets scoring. Both teams started to get into foul trouble, however, as 18 total whistles were blown in the period. From the free throw line, BW built up to a 40-35 lead and maintained around a five-point advantage until late in the quarter. At the 1:30 mark, Edwards started to assert her dominance inside as she scored five consecutive points for a 48-40 BW lead. A few field goals from each team later and the Yellow Jackets held a 51-44 lead heading into the fourth quarter.

Edwards scored the initial points of the final period but John Carroll came roaring back into the game, ripping off a 5-0 run to force a BW timeout. Out of the timeout, the Yellow Jackets and the Blue Streaks connected on back-to-back-to-back three pointers, cutting the deficit down to just one point. A pair of Heffington free throws gave the Blue Streaks their final lead of the game at 57-56 with 5:07 left. Marshall gave her team the lead for good with a layup at the 3:04 mark. With a lockdown defense that only allowed two points in the final five minutes, the Yellow Jackets were clutch from the free throw line, hitting all six of their attempts to seal the victory.

BW will begin the second half of conference play on the road on Saturday, Jan. 19, taking on Marietta College at 3 p.m. inside Ban Johnson Arena.