MC women’s win streak snapped

MARIETTA — Marietta College needed a zone-breaker to step up.

When none did, the Pioneers ended up dropping a 63-59 decision to Baldwin Wallace University in Ohio Athletic Conference women’s basketball action at Ban Johnson Arena Saturday.

“They threw that 2-3 zone at us, and we didn’t do as well against it as we wanted to,” said first-year MC head coach Kole Vivian. “So that kind of changed the game for us.

“We did a lot of good things, but we just weren’t ready for that zone. But we were right there until the end.”

Marietta (6-2 overall, 1-1 OAC) had a six-game winning streak snapped, while BW (4-0, 1-0) stayed undefeated.

“They’re a good team,” said MC sophomore Shay Lett. “And we’re making progress, but we’ve got some things to work on. It was a good fight.”

Lett, a non-starter, paced the Pioneers with 16 points, including four triples, in 18 minutes of play.

“Shay’s a dream to coach,” Vivian said. “She moves so well, and she’s just a great kid.”

Amisha Herd added 14 points and seven rebounds, while Brooke Borich and Corrie Burkhardt chipped in with 10 and seven markers respectively. Burkhardt also grabbed nine boards.

“They kept fighting,” Vivian said. “This team has a lot of energy and a lot of grit.”

Baldwin Wallace was led by Sydney Clark’s game-high 18 points. Clara Lemmon added a double-double with 12 points and 13 caroms.

“Marietta is a very good team, and we were fortunate,” said veteran Yellow Jackets boss Cheri Harrer. “That was two good teams battling it out. We were just lucky to be on the plus side of the scoreboard when time ran out.”

MC struggled at the beginning, trailing 22-13 at the end of one quarter. At the start of the second stanza, BW stretched its lead to double-digits, 25-13, on Kasey Hughes’ trey.

But the Pioneers, sparked by back-to-back threes by Borich and Lett, battled back and reduced the deficit to 32-28 at the two-minute mark.

Marietta then closed out the first half with a Lett triple and a Jordana Rauch drive and score. The Pioneers trailed 35-33 going into the lockerroom.

MC owned the third period, outpointing Baldwin Wallace, 14-7, for a 47-42 lead. Leading the comeback, Herd scored two straight putbacks during a 12-0 run. Jo Herd-Middlebrooks’ bankshot gave the Pioneers a 10-point advantage, 47-37, at the 3:23 mark.

The Yellow Jackets closed out the third with a 5-0 run on points by Kara Marshall and Tiffany Bentler.

That BW run carried over into the fourth quarter, when the visitors from Berea scored 13 unanswered points to regain the lead, 55-47.

“We finally started to get some stops from the defensive end,” Harrer said. “Then we gave them a different look (2-3 zone) and had them out of rythym a little bit. And we were able to capitalize on that.”

Still fighting though, Marietta came back and tied the score, 56-56, on Herd’s drive and score near the two-minute mark.

With 1:18 left, Clark drained a three to put BW back in front, but MC answered that with a Borich triple.

Clark and Lemmon then helped ice the game at crunch time, converting a combined four of six at the line.

Marietta is next scheduled to play at John Carroll University at 4 p.m. Saturday.