Melissa Scherpenberg Interview
FINDLAY, Ohio – Senior Melissa Scherpenberg (Cincinnati, Ohio) grabbed her own miss and laid it back in as time expired as Ohio Dominican's women's basketball team earned a wild victory at Findlay Thursday night in GLIAC play.
Tied at 79 after a basket by Findlay's Haley Horstman with 14 seconds left, junior Kayla Cook (Westerville, Ohio) misfired on a three. Scherpenberg collected the rebound, missed the initial putback, but got it back on the right block and put it in to beat the buzzer.
The officials reviewed the sequence on the replay monitor and ruled the shot left Scherpenberg's hand in time and no time was left on the clock after it dropped through the net, ending the game.
A 14 point halftime lead by the Panthers was wiped away as the Oilers gained a 73-69 advantage with just over four minutes left in the game.
Cook answered with a three, and after a Horstman jumper, junior Madi Rittinger (Dayton, Ohio) made two free throws to bring the Panthers within 75-74 with 2:36 left.
Junior Lauren Bates (Hilliard, Ohio) then blocked a three-point attempt, and Cook drained another three to put the Panthers back in front 77-75.
On the ensuing possession, Rittinger came up with a steal and went coast-to-coast for a layup, putting the Panthers in front 79-75 with 1:48 left.
ODU missed its next two shots, while the Oilers hit their next two, including the Horstman jumper, to draw back even with 14 ticks left.
With the win, Ohio Dominican continued its best start in the Division II era as the Panthers improved to 11-4 (6-3 GLIAC). Findlay fell to 11-4 (6-3 GLIAC). Both teams are tied for second in the GLIAC South Division, along with Walsh.
Five Panthers scored in double figures. Bates scored 18 points on 9-of-14 shooting to go along with five boards and four helpers. Cook tallied a career high 16 points off the bench, knocking down a personal best four triples.
Rittinger finished with 14 points, making 6-of-6 at the charity stripe, senior Rachael Torey (Sterling Heights, Mich.) put in a season best 15 points, and Scherpenberg finished with 10 points and 10 boards. Torey also dished out six assists.
Both teams shot identical percentages from the field as each went 30-of-59 from the floor for 50.8 percent. ODU matched a season-best by making 9-of-24 threes (37.5 percent) and went a perfect 12-of-12 from the free throw line. ODU also had a 36-23 rebounding advantage.
Bates scored ODU's first six points as part of an 11-2 run over the opening three minutes. Cook buried a pair of three pointers and Torey also drained a three to help give the Panthers a 25-16 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Findlay drew even at 32-32 with just over four minutes left in the half, but the Panthers closed with a flurry. Torey drained a three, Bates and Scherpenberg made layup, and junior Lindsey Blanford (Xenia, Ohio) also sunk a three as ODU scored the next 10 points to go in front 42-32 with 90 seconds left in the period.
Rose buried another three and Bates knocked down a jumper, then came up with a steal that led to a Scherpenberg lay-in before the buzzer to cap the 17-3 run and send ODU into the locker room with a 49-35 lead.
The Panthers shot 51.4 percent from the field (18-of-35) and connected on 7-of-17 (41.2 percent) from behind the arc in the half. The 49 points represented the highest scoring half for ODU this season as ODU had a 22-8 edge in rebounding. Bates tallied 12 points and Torey scored 11 in the opening 20 minutes.
Ohio Dominican returns home to host Wayne State at 1 p.m. Saturday in Alumni Hall.
Contact: Scott Miles