Oakland City, Ind. -- Coming into the game on Wednesday night against Oakland City (Ind.), the Patriot women’s basketball team (7-15) had struggled when things didn’t go their way, but on this night, they fought back when adversity hit.
Trailing 51-43 heading into the fourth quarter against the Mighty Oaks (8-10), the Patriots fought back tying the game 63 apiece to force five extra minutes. The Patriots started the overtime with three turnovers, but they turned a six point deficit into 79-75 win on the road.
“I was pleased with our effort tonight. After the Shawnee game I asked the girls, when are we going to grow up?” noted head coach Megan Dzikas. “Tonight we took a step forward and battled back when things didn’t go our way.”
Miranda Wilson (Corbin, Ky.) paced the Patriots with 23 points on 8-of-9 shooting from the field. Patrice Tonge (Lebanon, Ky.) posted her second double-double of the season with 20 points and 12 rebounds.
St. Catharine had five players tally at least six rebounds en route to a 54-32 edge on the glass including an 18-3 advantage on the offensive end. The Patriots turned that into a 19-2 edge in second chance points. Nikcoa Jackson (Louisville, Ky.) didn’t crack the scoring column, but finished with eight boards, and three other Patriots finished with six.
With the game tied at 35 all at halftime, the Mighty Oaks came out firing in the third period and built a 51-43 lead heading into the final 10 minutes. St. Catharine outscored the Mighty Oaks 20-12 in the fourth period to force overtime tied at 63 apiece.
In the opening minutes of overtime the Patriots trailed by as many as six, but they battled back thanks to the rebounding of Sasha Ruiz-Lopez (Ft. Myers, Fla.) and the free throw shooting of Breanna Ball (Huber Heights, Ohio).
“Sasha came up with some huge rebounds in the overtime and Breanna came up big down the stretch with some big free throws,” noted Dzikas. Free throws came up big in the overtime period, where the Patriots hit 10-of-11 at the charity stripe to seal the 79-75 win.The Patriots are back in action on Saturday when they jump back into Mid-South Conference action against Campbellsville (Ky.) with tipoff set for 2 p.m. ET in Lourdes Hall.