Women's basketball routs Berry 66-36 to open SAA play

Women's basketball routs Berry 66-36 to open SAA play

The Oglethorpe women's basketball team continued their run of outstanding play Saturday at Dorough Field House, beating the Berry Vikings 66-36 for their sixth win in a row and improving to 8-1 on the season overall.

The Stormy Petrels jumped out to a 7-0 lead over the first 2:20 of the game. Berry came back to tie the game 11-11 with 4 minutes remaining in the opening quarter, but Oglethorpe finished the period on a 7-0 run over the final 1:30 to take a 21-14 lead after 10 minutes. After that, they slowly pulled out to a 10-point lead over the opening 5 minutes of the second quarter, building a 27-17 advantage. The Vikings made it a 27-20 game with 3:45 left in the opening half, but an 8-0 Oglethorpe run late in the second quarter extended their advantage to 35-20 with 15 seconds left. The Petrels led 35-22 at the break.

The Petrels essentially put the game away in the third quarter, outscoring the Vikings 18-8 over the period and taking a 53-30 advantage into the final 10 minutes. Oglethorpe finished the game on an 11-3 run over the final 6:10, outscoring the visitors 13-6 in the fourth quarter to close the contest with their largest lead.

Oglethorpe shot 47.2 percent from the field and went 6-for-13 from 3-point range, giving them a decided advantage over Berry. The Petrels held the Vikings to just 24.1 percent overall and 4-for-21 from distance. In addition, Berry went just 6-for-21 from the charity stripe while Oglethorpe converted at a respectable 66.7 percent clip. The Petrels, who never trailed, outscored their opponent 24-12 off turnovers and 28-10 in the paint. They also outrebounded the visitors 42-31.

Junior center Savannah LeGate made a solid return to the starting lineup, scoring 15 points on 7-for-14 from the field while grabbing eight rebounds. Sophomore guard Nikki Reed had a scoresheet-stuffing performance, grabbing six boards, four assists and three steals while adding five points. Junior guard Taylor Smith scored 10 points and passed out three assists.

"I loved our defensive and rebounding intensity tonight," said Oglethorpe head coach Alex Richey. "We were locked in on that end of the floor and our communication was terrific. Every game is important, but conference games have a little something extra, so it feels great to get off to a good start in the league as we head into a brief break for finals."

The Petrels will be back in action when they host the TownePlace Suits by Marriott Classic Dec. 16 and 17 at Dorough Field House. They'll take on LeTourneau Dec. 16 at 6 p.m. and Belhaven the next day at 4 p.m.