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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

DPU women cruise past Oberlin in NCAC quarterfinals

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

DePauw's Ellie Pearson (above) gets fouled while going up strong during Tuesday's NCAC quarterfinal contest against Oberlin. Savannah Tree (below) came off the bench and led the Tiger with a game-high 14 points Tuesday.  [Order this photo]
In its first year in the NCAC tournament, the DePauw women's team overcame a slow start and took care of business against Oberlin Tuesday 76-38. The fourth-ranked Tigers moved to 24-1 with the win and will host Allegheny in the NCAC semifinal Friday at 8 p.m.

This was the third meeting between the Tigers and the Yeowomen, with DPU winning by an average of 38 points. But things didn't go smoothly out of the gates for the Tigers in Tuesday's matchup.

Oberlin's Kelly Warlich scored first, connecting on a three-pointer to which DePauw's Kate Walker answered with a layup. The teams would trade leads early, with DePauw clinging to a small lead for most of the first half. However, things changed at the six-minute mark.

Alex Gasaway and Emma Ondik hit back-to-back three-pointers to put DePauw up 10 points at 24-14 and there was no looking back from there. Ali Ross hit a free throw with 29 seconds left in the half to give DePauw a 31-19 lead at halftime.

DePauw head coach Kris Huffman described what she saw that caused her team some troubles in the first half following the win.

"I think we weren't defending that well and I thought that might have carried over to the offensive end," Huffman said. "And maybe I was calling too many set plays and we just needed to get in a flow, but I thought the lid came off in the second half and we had a much better offensive execution."

While the Tigers seemed to struggle to find its rhythm in the first half at times, the second half was a different story. DePauw came out strong and put to rest any thoughts Oberlin had of getting back into the game.

DePauw opened the second half with a 10-0 run to break out to a 41-19 lead with 13:52 remaining. The Yeowomen were able to reduce the lead a few points with some free throws, but DePauw continued to attack and built its lead at a gradual pace.

As the clock wound down, DePauw's Alison Stephens scored the final bucket of the contest giving the Tigers a 38-point win over Oberlin at 76-38. Oberlin committed 30 turnovers in the game, which DePauw turned into 24 points.

Another deciding factor in the game was DePauw's bench play. DePauw's bench outscored the entire Oberlin team 44-38 and even outpaced its starters by 12 points.

Savannah Trees led the Tigers with 14 points on the night, with Alex Gasaway adding 13, both players coming off the bench. Ross chipped in 10 points to give DPU three scorers in double figures.

Huffman thought two players in particular helped spark the Tigers in the second half.

"I thought a couple things in the second half. Kat Molloy got us going defensively and she had some easy looks offensively. And I thought Savannah Trees, it was late in the game, but I thought she really showed some strength offensively and we like that," she said.

Up next for the Tigers will be Wittenberg. The two teams will tip-off at 8 p.m. Friday at the Neal Fieldhouse in NCAC semi-final action.

At DePauw

DePauw 76 Oberlin 38

Oberlin 19 19 -- 38

DePauw 31 45 -- 76

Individual scoring

Oberlin -- Gannon 12, Warlich 11, Neumann 7, Young 4, Toland 4. Totals 13-40 FG, 10-16 FT, 38 TP.

DePauw -- Trees 14, Gasaway 13, Ross 10, Pearson 6, Aldrich 6, Molloy 6, Ondik 6, Abendroth 5, Walker 4, Lukemeyer 2, Stephens 2, McGinnis 2. Totals: 27-65 FG, 15-22 FT, 76 TP.