WESTERVILLE, Ohio-- Denison closed out the Smokey Ballenger Classic with a 49-45 win over the host Otterbein Cardinals on Sunday afternoon. The Big Red outscored Otterbein 13-5 in the fourth quarter to come away with the four-point victory. With the win, Denison improves to 8-4 while the Cardinals drop to 8-2.
DU trailed by four entering the fourth quarter. On the Big Red's second possession, Addie Buzas connected on a 3-pointer to cut the deficit to one. After snagging an offensive rebound on a missed 3-pointer by Zyah Beal, Alison Schafer scored and was fouled and converted the free throw to give her team a two-point lead.
Denison's 8-0 run to open the fourth was snapped with a three-point play by Abbie Scholz which got Otterbein to within one point of the lead with 6:25 to play.
Leading by one with under a minute to play, Beal was fouled with 16 seconds on the clock. She made the first and missed the second. Leading by two, Otterbein's attempt to either tie or take the lead resulted in a turnover. The Cardinals were forced to foul and Schafer made both free throws with nine seconds left to lock up the victory.
Schafer led DU with 14 points and six rebounds in 30 minutes. She was 5-of-5 from the free throw line and the Big Red were 8-for-9 as a team from the charity stripe. Beal followed with 12 points and five boards while Shonta Lockett paced the team on the glass with nine boards.
Scholz led Otterbein with 14 points and 11 rebounds. Bryn Mangold scored four points and had 13 rebounds while Delaney Cutteridge chipped in 10 points.
Denison returns to action on Saturday, January 4 at 2 p.m. when they host Oberlin College.