NASHVILLE – Behind 54.4 percent shooting and 12 blocked shots, Ohio Dominican's women's basketball team went on the road to take down Trevecca Nazarene 80-71 Tuesday night in non-conference play.
The Panthers shot a sparkling 14-of-25 in the second half after knocking down 17-of-32 from the field in the opening 20 minutes. The 54.4 percent shooting is ODU's best since shooting 56.1 percent in an 86-77 win over Tiffin on Feb. 27, 2014. The 12 blocks are the most since the Panthers swatted 12 shots against Carlow on Dec. 6, 2008.
ODU (4-1) opened up a 46-36 lead early in the third quarter after senior Melissa Scherpenberg (Cincinnati, Ohio) went the length of the floor after a steal and converted a layup. The Trojans buried consecutive three-pointers, though and cut the Panther lead to 55-53 with 2:29 left in the period. ODU took a 58-53 lead into the fourth after a free throw by senior Rachael Torey (Sterling Heights, Mich.) in the last minute of the third.
The Trojans (1-4) hit a three on their first possession of the quarter to draw within two again, but the Panthers responded with a 12-4 run. Scherpenberg hit consecutive jumpers, and Bates followed with a layup on a backdoor cut and a jump shot to extend the lead to 70-60 with 6:31 left.
TNU scored seven straight points late to cut the lead to 76-71 with 30 seconds left, but junior Tori Beth Leader (West Portsmouth, Ohio) hit four free throws to seal the win.
Scherpenberg scored a game-high 21 points and also led all players with 11 rebounds for her fourth double-double this season. She also swatted six shots – one shy of tying a career best – and came away with four steals. She surpassed 800 career rebounds in the game and recorded the 31st double-double of her career.
Bates was the lone other Panther in double figures as she scored 17 points while also dishing out four assists. Junior Madi Rittinger (Dayton, Ohio) tied career highs in assists (six) and blocks (five) and also scored six points.
Leader scored nine points and junior Lindsey Blanford (Xenia, Ohio) tallied eight points off the bench to pace ODU's scorers.
ODU trailed 10-6 in the first quarter, but used a 13-3 run to take a 19-13 lead at the end of the first 10 minutes. Scherpenberg made consecutive layups and Leader buried a triple with 30 seconds in the period to cap the spurt.
Torey's layup gave the Panthers a 35-26 lead, their biggest of the half, with 3:49 left, and the Panthers took a 41-34 advantage into the locker room. They held Trevecca to 12-of-37 shooting (32.4 percent) in the half.
Ohio Dominican is off for the Thanksgiving holiday and begins GLIAC play at 6 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 3 at Saginaw Valley.
Contact: Scott Miles