After a month of games on the road, College of the Ozarks women’s basketball returned home to host William Woods University on Monday evening.
College of the Ozarks pulled ahead of the Owls early, taking a 10-6 lead following a corner three-pointer from senior Ashley Forrest. However, William Woods retaliated with a 9-0 run as guard Kaycee Gerald pushed the pace and spread the ball around. A timeout stopped the bleeding, as the Lady Cats put together back-to-back stops to go on a run of their own. Right before the first quarter buzzer, a sweet dish from Grace Steiger to Harper Little resulted in a three-point make to cut the WWU lead to 17-16.
To open the second quarter, Little returned the favor with a nifty dish to Steiger for a turnaround baby hook. Harper finished with a pair of three pointers in the game, for a total of six points, to go along with five steals, three assists, and four rebounds. Steiger finished with eight points and four boards.
On the next possession, WWU ran a handoff play for a three pointer by Peyton Greenlee. A quick steal and replay of the same scheme resulted in another dagger from downtown by Greenlee. Unfortunately, the Lady Bobcats would turn the ball over eight times in the second quarter alone, resulting in a 46-33 halftime lead for the Lady Owls.
At the half, C of O had a total of 11 turnovers to just four for WWU. C of O shot 12 for 29 (41.4%) from the field. William Woods countered by shooting 20 for 35 (57.1%) from the field, including 4 for 10 (40%) from downtown, and won the rebounding war 18-15.
In the third quarter, neither team would budge, trading baskets back-and-forth. A steal by Abby Oliver became a quick post entry to Annie Noah and kickout for an Oliver three-pointer. WWU would answer with a three-pointer of their own to keep pace. Noah ended the game with two assists and nine points. Annie also led the team in rebounds and blocks with seven and two respectively. Near the end of the frame, Grace Steiger dropped off another sweet pass to a cutting Michele Gabani to trim the lead to single digits. The Owls immediately answered back with two buckets to close out the quarter leading, 65-52.
The final quarter was much like the third, a tug-of-war with C of O being unable to trim their deficit. At the end, the Lady Bobcats would lose 65-52. For the second half, College of the Ozarks shot 12 for 30 (40%) from the field and just 2 for 10 (20%) from outside-the-arc. For the game, C of O hit 24 for 59 (40.7%). Although WWU cooled slightly in the second half, they finished 33 for 61 (54.1%) from the field and won the turnover battle 21-16.
For the Lady Bobcats, Abby Oliver led the way with 14 points. Jordan Wersinger came off-the-bench to add 13 points. Kayley Frank scored eight points and Julie Stone chipped in five.
For more compete stats, visit: https://tinyurl.com/trr82po
With the loss, C of O dropped to 16-4 and WWU improved to 14-4. College of the Ozarks women’s basketball returns to action on January 24th as they travel to Lincoln, IL to take on Washington Adventist at the Lincoln Classic.