Comden, Defiance Down Grizzlies to Stay Perfect in HCAC Action
DEFIANCE, Ohio – The Yellow Jacket women's basketball team is off to its best start in conference since the 2001-2002 season, as the Purple and Gold improved to 4-0 on Saturday in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference with a 59-51 win over the defending conference champions Franklin College.
DC came out of the gates quickly, as the Jackets raced to a 10-point edge in the first eight minutes of play with the score 14-4. The Defiance defense was suffocating in this stretch, as the Yellow Jackets stifled the Grizzlies into missing 11 of their first 13 field goal attempts.
The two squads battled back-and-forth the rest of the first, as the Purple and Gold grabbed its biggest lead of the day off a Kim Comden three-pointer to give DC a 32-17 lead with under three minutes remaining in the opening frame.
Franklin managed to score the last three points before break to cut the Defiance lead to 32-20 going into halftime. The Jackets' Comden had a monster half to help DC open up a double-digit advantage. The senior recorded a first-half double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds, while being an absolute force on the defensive end with a career-high six blocks at the half.
The Grizzlies came out of the break rejuvenated, as Franklin refused to go away by scoring 10 of the first 14 points to open the second stanza and cut the score to 36-32 with over 15 minutes remaining on the clock.
After the Purple and Gold managed to stretch the lead back up to nine at 43-34 off an Erica King trey, the Grizzlies once again made a charge. Franklin used a 15-8 spurt over the next six minutes to make it a single-possession game at 51-49 thanks to a Lindsay Rich layup with 7:11 left in the contest.
Two points is as close as the Yellow Jackets would allow the Grizzlies to get, as DC scored the next seven points to push the lead back up to a comfortable nine-point margin. The Jacket defense swarmed Franklin the last seven minutes of the game, only relinquishing two points down the final stretch. A free throw by King with 10 seconds left put the game on ice, as DC won by a score of 59-51.
With the victory, the Purple and Gold have now won five-straight games to improve its season record to 5-3. The five-game winning streak is the longest since the 2009-2010 season. The Jackets are currently tied atop the HCAC standings with Transylvania as the only two teams to sport an unblemished 4-0 record heading into the Christmas break.
The aforementioned Comden recorded her sixth double-double performance of her career and second of the season. The center finished with 16 points, a career-high 14 rebounds, six blocks, a steal and an assist. Comden has scored 15 or more points in all five games of the current win streak.
Another Yellow Jacket to have a solid all-around performance was Hannah Harshman, who scored 12 points on 5-8 shooting from the field and 2-2 from the line. The junior hauled in seven rebounds and dished out two assists in the effort.
The Purple and Gold are back in action on Tuesday, December 18, as the Jackets travel to Kalamazoo for a non-conference matchup. The game is slated to start at 7:00 p.m.