Feb. 18 – HIRAM, Ohio – On a day that celebrated the accomplishments of three players, the Hiram women's basketball team continued their season of firsts, defeating Kenyon College, 56-52, on Saturday afternoon.
The victory over the ladies improved the Terriers' mark to 17-8 on the season, giving the team the most wins in program history. The win also moved Hiram to 9-7 in conference play, marking the first winning record since joining the North Coast Athletic Conference in 1999-2000.
The matchup with Kenyon started off in favor of the visitors, as the Ladies ran out to a 10-1 lead through the first four minutes of the game. Hiram would quickly respond, however, using a 15-5 swing to finish the quarter with a one-point lead, 16-15.
Junior Kayla Yost proved instrumental in the first-quarter run, scoring seven-straight points and nine, overall, in the run, to turn the deficit into the one-point advantage. Sarah Spehn finished the run in the quarter, knocking down a pair of free throws to give Hiram their first lead of the game.
The Terriers would again outscore the Ladies in the second quarter, 15-12, to take a four-point lead into the break. Hiram pushed the lead to as many as seven (30-23) with 2:04 to play in the half thanks to a three by senior Dana Perrotta. Kenyon would hold Hiram to one point through the remainder of the half, closing the gap to 31-27 at the break.
The first seven minutes of the second half saw the Ladies pull the game back to even, using a 9-5 swing to knot the game at 36-36 with 2:53 to play in the quarter.
Throughout the next 11 minutes, which spanned the final two minutes of the third and first nine minutes of the fourth quarter, the team's played even while seeing the score knotting five more times. In that span, neither team led by more than four points.
Trailing 52-51 with 55 seconds to play, Yost connected on a pair from the free-throw line, giving Hiram a one-point lead (53-52).
On Kenyon's next possession, the Terriers turned the Ladies away thanks to a steal by Kaylee Shockley. The ensuing Hiram possession led to a pair of successful free throws from Dana Perrotta, pushing the lead to three (55-52).
One final time, the Terriers were asked to lock down on the defensive end. With under 10 seconds to play, a three-point attempt by Kenyon's Paige Matijasich missed the mark and was rebounded by Allison Vannoy. From there, Hiram would go on for the four-point victory.
Yost put together her best offensive outing of the season, finishing the game with a season-high 23 points. She was just one of two players in the game to finish in double figures, shooting a perfect, 7-for-7 from the field, and 3-of-3 from outside the arc.
The victory for the Terriers, coupled with other results from today's action around the NCAC, has resulted in a four-way tie for third place in the conference standings. Due to tiebreakers, Hiram was given the fourth seed, and quarterfinal hosting rights for the upcoming NCAC Championship Tournament. It will mark the first time since joining the conference that Hiram will host a playoff game.
Prior to the game, seniors Perrotta and Antojia Lozancic, as well as Jones, were all honored as a part of pre-game festivities. With one-more victory, the senior class will becoming the winningest class in program history.
The Terriers will open NCAC Tournament play on Tuesday, Feb. 21, when they play host to the fifth-seeded Yeowomen of Oberlin College. The action is slated for a 7 p.m. start.