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Wittenberg knocks off Denison in overtime

Alison Schafer  |  Photo by Jace Delgado
Alison Schafer | Photo by Jace Delgado

SPRINGFIELD, Ohio--  Alison Schafer drilled a 3-pointer with three seconds left to force overtime, but Wittenberg outscored Denison 10-4 in OT to hand the Big Red a 68-62 loss.

The Tigers led by 15 late in the third quarter, but the fourth belong to Denison. 

It was the duo of Schafer and Brittany Atkinson who carried Denison in the fourth quarter.  Schafer scored 12 of her season-high 20 points in the quarter on 4-of-7 shooting from beyond the arc.

Denison trailed by 13 entering the fourth and they opened with a 9-0 run to make it a 50-47 game with 7:45 play.

Back-to-back 3-pointers by Schafer gave Denison its first lead since the first quarter at 55-54 with four minutes to play.

Wittenberg's Amanda Raber put her squad on top by two with one minute to play.  On Denison's ensuing possession Schafer's 3-pointer was off the mark.  The rebound went out of bounds and possession was awarded to the Big Red.  Lucy Bancone attempted a 3-pointer that also missed and was hauled in by Haley Dannemiller who promptly turned it over, giving it back to DU with 21 seconds left.

Denison got a good look at the other end but Atkinson's triple was off the mark.  Wittenberg secured the rebound and the Big Red were forced to foul.  At the line, Raber split the pair with 13 seconds left to make it 58-55.

After a timeout by Denison, that set the stage for Schafer's bomb that sent the game into overtime.

In overtime, both teams were scoreless for the first 88 seconds until Lauren Hofer's bucket after a steal by Atkinson but Denison on top, 60-58.

Trailing 61-60 with 2:54 to play, Atkinson scored down low on a pass from Hofer to take the lead back at 62-61.

Wittenberg responded with a layup by Delaney Williams and Schafer's 3-pointer was off the mark at the other end.  With Wittenberg leading by one with 30 seconds to play, Wittenberg went back to Williams in the post.  She scored and was fouled with nine seconds left.  After the free throw, the Tigers led 66-62.

Denison went for the quick two, but Atkinson's attempt fell off the rim to seal their fate.

Williams scored the final seven points of the game for the Tigers and ended the game with 12 points.  Kristie Kalis led Wittenberg with 18 points and 11 rebounds in 31 minutes off the bench.

Atkinson's game-high 23 points was a new career high for the senior. She was 10-of-18 from the field and 3-of-6 from long range.

Schafer was 7-for-18 and 6-of-13 from beyond the arc for 20 points. She also led the squad with nine rebounds.

Denison shot 31 percent (24-of-77) and was 10-for-29 from 3-point range (35 percent).  Wittenberg shot 40 percent from the field (24-of-60) and were 16-for-20 from the free throw line.

The Big Red falls to 8-12 and 3-8 in the North Coast Athletic Conference while the Tigers move to 10-10 and 5-6 in league play.  Denison will try and get back on track on Wednesday (Jan.31) when they host Ohio Wesleyan at 6 p.m.

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