TERRE HAUTE, Ind. - A lengthy trip to west-central Indiana proved successful for the Defiance College women's basketball squad on Saturday afternoon. The Yellow Jackets, for the first time since 2015, defeated Rose-Hulman 53-43 to to stay undefeated in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action.
"Obviously it feels good to get another win, a league win at that," said Defiance head coach Allan King Jr. "Overall, I'm proud of our execution. Our whole team was engaged in the game and were helping call out cues. That's a sign of a team starting to mature."
A back-and-forth opening to the contest saw the sides swap the lead before Defiance tallied a six point run to regain control before the quarter break. The second quarter similarly saw Rose pull a slight advantage before Defiance posted four points in the final minute to take a 29-24 lead into the break. With the lead coming out of the locker room, the Yellow Jackets never let the hosts get within four points for the remainder of the action.
DC shot 38.9 percent from the field, the second-highest rate for the program thus far this season. The Yellow Jackets went six-of-nine (66.7 percent) from the charity stripe while also reeling in 37 rebounds as compared to the Fightin' Engineers' 33.
Defensively, Defiance held Rose to just one-of-seven from deep and a 36.5 percent mark from the floor. The teams held equal footing on the turnover front as each side finished with 16.
For the Yellow Jackets, numerous players found their stride on the offensive side of the ball. Lexie Sparks (Trenton/Kings) led the way with 16 points from the bench while also dishing out three assists. Kalyn Pickens (Ft. Wayne, Ind./R. Nelson Snider) finished the contest with 12 points, marking back-to-back double-digit performances for the junior. On the glass, Josi Wolf (LaRue/Elgin Local) grabbed a team-high six rebounds while also recording nine points in the affair.
"We had a lot of big performances, I think none bigger than Josi Wolf on the defensive end. She did a great job of containing their bigs inside and really set the tone competing," said King.
With a plethora of strong performances to discuss, King added, "Lexie Sparks bouncing back and going seven-of-nine from the field and scoring 16 points in only 15 minutes was huge. Once she started scoring, they were coming after her and she did a good job of moving the basketball and getting it to teammates."
Defiance improves to 2-4 on the season and 2-0 in HCAC play. THe Yellow Jackets will return to action Saturday, December 14, as they host Hanover in conference action. The contest in the Karl H. Weaner Center is scheduled for 1:00 pm.