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Halftime lead not enough as Oberlin downs Denison

Brittany Atkinson  |  Photo by Jace Delgado
Brittany Atkinson | Photo by Jace Delgado

OBERLIN, Ohio – Despite 12 first-half points from sophomore Lauren Hofer and a 36-31 halftime lead, the Denison women's basketball team suffered a 62-56 loss at Oberlin College on Wednesday night.

The Big Red surrendered their halftime lead in the third quarter following a 3-of-19 shooting performance while being outscored 14-8. With 5:10 remaining in the third frame, a foul on Denison's Aliyah Hunter put Oberlin's Olivia Canning to the charity stripe where she buried both attempts and shrunk the Yeowomen deficit to 40-39. Hunter made up for the foul with a three on the next possession to take a four-point lead, 43-39, with less than five minutes remaining in the third.

With DU holding onto a 44-43 lead with 11 seconds remaining in the third quarter, a steal from Oberlin's Tyler Parlor resulted in a layup from Maggie Gross with one second to play in the third to give OC the 45-44 lead entering the final period.

Less than a minute into the fourth quarter, senior Brittany Atkinson recaptured the Big Red lead with a three that pushed Denison ahead, 47-45. Back-to-back layups for Canning and Abby Andrews put Oberlin back in front, 49-47, with 7:07 to go in the game.

After Hunter connected on another three at the 6:24 mark, the Big Red went 0-for-5 from the field while the Yeowomen capitalized on a 6-1 scoring run to take a 55-51 lead with 3:08 remaining. Denison's Valesha Province countered with a bucket with less than three minutes to play, but another layup from Oberlin's Canning increased their lead back to 57-53.

DU continued to fight following a missed shot from Abby Andrews as sophomore Addie Buzas hit from behind the arc to trail OC by only one, 57-56, with 1:31 to play. That would be the last bucket for the Big Red as the Yeowomen ended the night on a 5-0 scoring run, including 3-of-4 from the free throw line to hand Denison the loss.

The Big Red were held to 27-percent from the field in the fourth quarter and only attempted four free throws on the night. Buzas led DU with 14 points and eight rebounds, while Hofer finished right behind with 12 tallies and seven boards. Province chipped in 11 points and Hunter added six points off the bench.

Oberlin was paced by three players who finished in double figures, with Canning securing a double-double on a game-high 16 points and 10 rebounds. Andrews contributed 11 points and eight rebounds, while Ally Driscoll added 10 points and five assists.

Denison will return to Livingston Gymnasium on Saturday, Dec. 9 as they play host to Wittenberg University at 1 p.m.

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