The Oglethorpe women's basketball team engaged in a wild, back-and-forth contest with the homestanding Sewanee Tigers Sunday afternoon in Sewanee, Tennessee. In a game that featured several huge momentum swings and lead changes, though, it was Sewanee who eventually came out on top, defeating the Stormy Petrels 53-50. The loss dropped Oglethorpe to 13-9 on the season overall and 7-4 in SAA play. Depending on results from elsewhere in the league, they'll either be tied for second place or in third place by themselves at the end of the weekend.
Neither team was able to shoot the ball particularly well, but Sewanee was able to convert at a higher rate, coming in at 34 percent from the field to Oglethorpe's 28 percent. The Petrels also struggled at the free throw line, shooting 42 percent from the stripe to the Tigers' 67 percent. The visitors outrebounded Sewanee 53-39 overall and 23-10 on the offensive glass, outscoring them 13-4 in second chance points.
Individually, sophomore forward Lauren Ransom collected her ninth double-double of the season, scoring 10 points and grabbing 12 rebounds. Sophomore forward Madi Foltz played well, recording 11 points on 2-of-4 from beyond the 3-point arc, while sophomore guard Bailey Charles added 15 points on 5-of-11 from 3-point range.
Oglethorpe got off to an excellent start, jumping out to a 6-0 advantage over the first 90 seconds of the contest. After the Tigers cut the lead to 6-4, the Petrels ran off seven consecutive points to make it 13-4 with 3:56 to go in the opening period. However, Sewanee scored nine consecutive to tie the game 13-13 with 1:21 left in the period. The Petrels converted on consecutive 3-pointers to push back out to a 6-point lead, and they led by five headed into the second period.
However, Sewanee mounted a comeback in the second. The visitors pushed their lead back out to seven points to begin the quarter, holding a 23-16 edge with 7:27 remaining in the half. However, they went cold for the remainder of the period. Sewanee outscored Oglethorpe 17-1 over the final 7:10 of the period and led the Petrels 33-24 at the halftime break.
The Petrels came roaring back in the third quarter. They turned the tables on the homestanding Tigers and outscored them 17-3 over the course of the period, taking the lead on a jumper from freshman forward Karlymarie Dyer with 2:42 remaining. They led 41-36 after 30 minutes of play.
It was Sewanee who took control in the fourth quarter, though. They began the period on a 10-0 run and flipped the lead back into their favor, 46-41, with 6:09 remaining. The Petrels responded with a 9-3 mini-run to pull to within a single point, 49-48, with 1:58 on the clock. However, Sewanee made baskets on consecutive trips down the floor to take a 53-48 lead with 56 seconds to go. After missed shots on both ends, the Petrels finally got a basket to go with 9 seconds remaining. Sewanee missed a pair of free throws at the other end, giving Oglethorpe a chance, but their halfcourt heave at the buzzer came up short.
"We had a really bad second quarter," said Oglethorpe head coach Alex Richey. "We settled for too many jump shots and got away from our identity. It's a tough pill to swallow today. The best news is that it is over and today was not a one-and-done day, like the conference tournament will be."
The Petrels will be back in action next weekend, when they return home to Dorough Field House for the home stretch of the regular season. They'll take on Birmingham-Southern Friday at 6 p.m. and Millsaps Sunday at 1 p.m. The Sunday game will be a part of National Girls and Women in Sports Day festivities on campus.