CIIRCLEVILLE, OH – The women’s basketball team, playing three games in three days at the Ohio Christian University Tournament, were tested against two top-10 NCCAA DII teams, #1 team, Kentucky Christian, #2 Ohio Christian University, losing 67-37 to OCU on Thursday, and 64-53 on Friday.
On Thursday, OCU posted a 31-13 lead at halftime and dominated the boards with a 44-28 edge, and the most telling statistic was the 19-2 advantage the Trailblazers had in offensive rebounds during the game.
Maranatha, after shooting just 25% from the field in the first half, significantly improved in the second, shooting 37%, while scoring 24 points in the second half.
The Crusaders were without their leading scorer, Laci Peterson (Chillicothe, IL), who has averaged 11.8 rebounds and 9.6 rebounds per game, with over five blocks per game.
But Maranatha received strong play from both sophomore forward Stacy Reinke (Clintonville, WI), and freshman guard Courtney Dunn (Oshkosh, WI), as Reinke had 14 points and eight rebounds, while Dunn finished with 12 points and four steals.
Against the KCU Knights on Friday, Maranatha fared much better, with three players in double-digit scoring, while putting together an impressive second half, in which the Crusaders matched KCU’s 29 points scored, after a 35-24 deficit at halftime. As a team, Maranatha shot 50% from the field in the second half.
The team was led by senior forward Erin Steuerwald (Whitewater, WI), who had a breakout game against the #1 team, and was tied with KCU’s Monica Stevens with 18 points—her most this season. Steuerwald also chipped in six rebounds, and was near-perfect from the field (7-8) while going 4-6 from the free-throw line.
Dunn and Reinke posted 12 points apiece, and Reinke anchored the defense with nine rebounds while senior guard Allison Schulz (Chillicothe, IL) had seven points and seven rebounds.
Maranatha finishes the tournament with a game on Saturday against University of Cincinnati Clermont, at 1:00 p.m. EST.