LEXINGTON, KENTUCKY – The Yellow Jackets were routed in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action at Transylvania on Saturday afternoon, 65-52.
Defiance (4-9 overall, 2-4 HCAC) was led in the contest by junior Lauren Rogers (Munger, Mich./Bay City Central) with 14 points and seven rebounds, while sophomore Danielle Carruthers (New London) added 12 points and junior Sam Ervin 9Bloomdale/Elmwood) chipped in 11 points.
The Pioneers jumped ahead early in the opening period before senior Whitney Schalk (Bellevue) found Rogers for a three-pointer to cut the deficit to 4-3 with 8:28 to play. The Purple and Gold continued to chip away at the Transylvania advantage finally capturing the lead with 6:52 remaining following back-to-back scores by Carruthers and Rogers, 9-7. The two teams exchanged points for several minutes before another Pioneer run gave them the 13-9 lead. However, DC kept battling as Schalk connected with senior Brittany Osborne (Union City) inside the lane with 2:08 to play to pull Defiance within 20-15 after the opening period.
The second period started off slow as neither team could find an offense before back-to-back deep balls from senior Mekai White (Cincinnati/Winton Woods) and sophomore Shelby Stamm (Bellevue) tied the game at 21-21 with 5:24 remaining. The Pioneers responded using a 6-0 run to reclaim the lead, 27-21. They continued its domination on the offensive side of the ball as Transylvania captured its largest lead of the quarter, 34-23. The Purple and Gold looked to get some momentum going as Ervin hit a shot at the buzzer to enter the break trailing 34-25.
The Pioneers blew the game wide open in the third period using another run to push its lead to 42-30 with 7:15 to play. The Defiance offensive struggles continued as a turnover and score extended the Transylvania lead with 4:08 remaining, 48-34 before DC closed out the third period on a 5-0 run to cut the deficit to 51-40.
The Yellow Jackets carried the momentum into the fourth quarter using back-to-back scores to pull within seven, 51-44. Carruthers deemed clutch late for Defiance as she continued to find success down low completing the old fashion three point play with 6:33 remaining, 53-49. Transy weathered the storm and responded with a small run to push the advantage, 58-49. The Pioneers finished the contest shooting 22-for-52 (42.3%) from the field en route to the 65-52 win.
Defiance returns to action Wednesday, January 10 as they travel to Bluffton. Game time is set for 6:00 p.m.