Jan. 25 – WOOSTER, Ohio – The Hiram College women's basketball team matched a program high, sixth North Coast Athletic Conference victory, and guaranteed themselves a winning season, defeating The College of Wooster 74-50 on Wednesday evening.
The victory for Hiram gave the team their 14th of the season, solidifying a winning mark for just the sixth time in program history. This year will also mark the first winning season for the team since 1988-89.
The Terriers used a complete team effort, as all five starters finished the game in double figures. The starting five finished with 60 of the team's 74 points, led by 16 from Mercedes Jones. Kaylee Shockley added 13 while Dana Perrotta added 11. Both Kayla Yost and Allison Vannoy finished with 10, each.
Hiram never trailed in the game, running out to a 15-4 lead through the first six minutes of the opening quarter. The visitors controlled the entirety of the first ten minutes, outscoring the Fighting Scots 25-11. Perrotta played well in the frame, scoring eight of the team's 25.
The second quarter would be played evenly, with Hiram holding a slight, 17-14, edge, pushing the lead to 17 points at the break (42-25). The lead would fluctuate between 11 and 17 points throughout the period, before resting on the largest advantage of the half.
Perrotta and Jones did the damage in the first 20 minutes, combining for 21 of the 42 points. Perrotta finished the half with 11 points, including shooting 4-of-5 from the field.
Shockley would lead the Terriers in the third quarter of action, scoring seven of the team's 14 points. Hiram would also lock down defensively, holding Wooster to just 11 in the frame.
The advantage would swell to as many as 25 points in the quarter as Hiram used a 12-2 swing to grow the lead from 44-29 to 56-31 with 2:16 left in the frame. The quarter would close with Hiram holding a 20-point lead (56-36).
Wooster opened the fourth quarter on a 12-6 run to cut the Hiram lead to 62-48 with 3:02 to play.
Hiram would respond, however, going on a 10-0 run to end the game. In the final 2:28, Vannoy posted seven-straight points, including a three pointer and four-consecutive free throws. Freshman Logan Nitsche then added her first three pointer of the season, rounding out the scoring at 74-50.
Holding the Scots to just 50 points, the Terrier defense held Wooster to .271 shooting in the game and just 16 made field goals.
Jones, who played just 24 minutes for Hiram, finished the game with her second double-double of the season, adding 10 rebounds to her 16 points. Both of her double-doubles this season have come against the Scots.
Shockley, who is one of just two players in the conference to rank in the top 16 in the NCAC in points, rebounds, steals, assists and blocks per game, once again filled the stat sheet. Along with her 13 points, the junior added a team-high five assists, four rebounds, two steals and a block.
The Terriers shared the ball well in the game, assisting on over half of their made baskets. Vannoy, who came into the game as the conference's assist leader, finished the game with four to go along with Shockley's five.
Hiram will continue NCAC action on Saturday, January 28 as they play host to the Gators of Allegheny College. The matchup is scheduled for a 1 p.m. start.