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Second-Half Surge Propels Women's Hoops to Fourth-Straight Win

Second-Half Surge Propels Women's Hoops to Fourth-Straight Win

Dec. 13 – GROVE CITY, Pa. – The Hiram College women's basketball team captured their fourth-straight win, and their sixth in seven games, by dispatching Grove City College on Tuesday evening. The Terriers dominated the fourth quarter en route to a 76-62 victory.

The final frame proved to be the difference for the Terriers yet again, as Hiram shot .667 in the quarter to outscore the Wolverines 27-11. The lopsided margin turned a two-point, third-quarter, deficit, into the Terriers third double-digit victory in a row.

Hiram never trailed in the opening 10 minutes of the game, running out to a quick, 9-2, lead in the opening three minutes. Kayla Yost opened the scoring with back-to-back buckets, which was followed by a layup by Mercedes Jones. Allison Vannoy then finished off the run with a triple. The trio would combine for 48 points in the matchup.

Grove City would respond with a 7-0 run of their own, before Jones finished off the quarter with another basket and a pair of free throws to give Hiram a four-point cushion heading into quarter number two.

The Terriers would continue to hold the advantage until a 5-0 run by the Wolverines pushed the hosts ahead by four, 26-22, with 4:01 to play in the second quarter.

Still trailing by four in the final two minutes, Dana Perrotta nailed a three-point basket and Jones added another free throw, pulling the game to a tie at 28-28, which is where the half would end.

Jones totaled 11 points in the opening 20 minutes, while Grove City countered with 16 of their 28 points from senior Lexi Arkwright.

As was the case in the first half, the Terriers once again jumped out to an early advantage in the second stanza. Hiram used a 10-2 run over the first 2:15 to open an eight point lead, 38-30. Vannoy led the way in the run, posting seven-straight points, including a pair of buckets off of assists from Perrotta. Yost then capped the run with an "old-fashioned" three-point play.

The hosts would once again fight back, outscoring the Terriers 15-5 over the next four minutes to take a two-point advantage, 45-43. The score would see three more ties over the final 1:30 of the quarter, before a layup from Jess Book with three seconds to play gave the Wolverines a two-point edge heading into the fourth.

It was in the fourth quarter that the Terrier offense once again came alive. Hiram hit on 10-of-15 attempts in the final frame, scoring 27 points to break the game open.

With the score tied at 55, the Terriers would take the lead for the final time on a layup by Yost at the 7:14 mark. From there, Hiram would outscore Grove City 21-7 to earn the win. Jazmine Scott helped solidify the victory, sparking the Terriers on a 6-0 run that pushed the lead to eight (69-61) with 2:08 to play.

Scott first assisted on a jumper from Erica Johnson, before pulling down a defensive board and starting a break which ended in a layup from Jones. Scott then capped the run by stealing the ball and knocking down a fast-break jumper to push the advantage to eight.

Hiram would allow just one more point in the final push, going 7-of-8 from the line and getting three-straight defensive stops to seal the 14-point victory.

The second-half offensive surge has become a regularity for the Terriers, as Hiram has now posted at least 40 points over the final two quarters in their last three outings.

Jones continued her offensive roll, posting a team-high 21 points to pace Hiram. She finished the game 8-of-11 from the field, and has now tallied at least 20 points in four-consecutive games. Over the last two weeks, the junior is averaging 22.7 points while shooting .568 from the field.

Other offensive leaders included Yost's season-best 17 points, as well as 10 from Vannoy. Clover Kaple tallied seven points, while Shockley, Scott and Johnson posted six, each. The Terriers shared the ball efficiently, assisting on 17 of their 28 made baskets.

Hiram will look to continue their hot streak on Saturday, December 17, when they return to Price Gymnasium for a non-conference matchup against Geneva College. Tip against the Golden Tornadoes is scheduled for 2 p.m.

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