The Oglethorpe women's basketball team struggled on the offensive end for the second straight game Sunday, but for the second straight game, they used outstanding defense and rebounding to defeat their opponent. This time, they earned a 47-42 victory over the Guilford Quakers Sunday afternoon at Dorough Field House, improving to 8-1 on the season.
The Stormy Petrels shot just 25.4 percent from the field, but despite the shooting woes, they held Guilford to just 31.4 percent and took 26 more shots than the Quakers. The Petrels earned those extra shots by outrebounding Guilford 19-5 on the offensive glass and forcing 22 turnovers while committing 11. Oglethorpe outscored their opponent 18-2 in second-chance points and 10-2 off the fast break.
Neither team led by more than five points during the course of the game, which featured 11 ties and six lead changes. With the game tied 40-40 and 5:45 left to play, the Petrels got a layup from sophomore forward Audrey Burdge and a couple of free throws from freshman guard Nikki Reed to vault them ahead 44-40 with 4:45 remaining. Guilford scored with 2:11 to go making it a two-point game at that point. Sophomore center Savannah LeGate made 1-of-2 at the free-throw line with a minute left to give her team a 45-42 edge. The Quakers missed a potential game-tying 3-pointer with 40 seconds left at the other end, then the Petrels put it away with nine seconds left when Reed scored off a feed from senior guard Bailey Charles to make it 47-42.
The two teams traded the lead in the third quarter. Oglethorpe built a 29-26 lead early in the period, but Guilford came back to vault into a 37-34 lead with 2:30 to go. The Petrels came back to tie the score headed into the fourth quarter.
Guilford held a small lead for much of the first period and held an 8-5 edge with 1:45 remaining. However, back-to-back 3-pointers from Charles and junior guard Sydney Long moved the Petrels in front 11-8. They led 11-10 going into the second quarter.
The Petrels used an 8-4 stretch to open the second quarter and pushed out to their largest lead of the game, a 19-14 advantage with 6:14 left until halftime. After the Quakers came back to tie it up, consecutive baskets from senior forward Lauren Ransom and Charles pulled Oglethorpe back out to a five-point lead, 24-19, with three minutes remaining in the half. Guilford finished on a 5-0 run to tie the score 24-all headed into the halftime break.
LeGate finished with seven points, nine rebounds and three blocks, while Ransom added eight points, seven boards and three steals.
"I'm really proud of how this team is maturing and playing through adversity, even when shots aren't falling," said Oglethorpe head coach Alex Richey. "This was a big win today, and we had multiple players step up and make big plays on the defensive end and on the glass. I am confident that we will right the ship offensively and continue to progress as we inch closer and closer to conference play."
The Petrels will next host the Quality Suites Holiday Classic on Thursday and Friday at Dorough Field House. They'll take on No. 2 Hope Thursday at 5 p.m. and Calvin Friday at 3 p.m.