Marietta College upsets Baldwin Wallace, 64-62

BEREA — The Marietta College women’s basketball team dispatched 20th-ranked Baldwin Wallace, 64-62, Wednesday at Ursprung Gymnasium.

With the win, Marietta improved to 9-3 overall and 4-1 in Ohio Athletic Conference play, and Baldwin Wallace fell to 10-2 overall and 4-1 in the OAC.

Head coach Kole Vivian said, “This win speaks volumes about how close our team is, to come back from four points down with 1:30 minute left to win practically at the buzzer. Baldwin Wallace is a great team and well coached, and to leave their gym with a win is an unreal feeling.” Marietta opened the game quickly as Shay Lett stole a Baldwin Wallace pass on the opening possession and Alexis Enochs knocked down a three pointer. The Pioneers grabbed a 5-0 lead a minute into the game as Marlo Taylor converted a layup. The Yellow Jackets battled back, but Marietta led, 8-6 at the midway point of the quarter. Marietta’s defense did not allow Baldwin Wallace to score for the final 2:27 minutes and entered the second quarter ahead, 17-9.

The Yellow Jackets opened the second quarter with a pair of quick buckets to cut the Pioneers advantage to 17-13. After nearly three scoreless minutes of action, Enochs and Bailee Brooks each hit a jumper and stretched the Marietta lead to 21-13, which forced a Baldwin Wallace timeout. The Yellow Jackets were able to cut into the Pioneers lead to end the half, but Marietta led, 26-22.

The Pioneers played superb defense in the first half as they held Baldwin Wallace to 26 percent shooting from the field. Marietta forced eight turnovers and had a pair of blocks in the half.

After the Yellow Jackets hit a three pointer to open the second half, Marietta responded with a 7-0 run to take a 33-25 lead. The run was propelled by an Enochs layup and a Brooks jumper, and Lett capped the run with a three pointer. Baldwin Wallace was able to cut into the Pioneers lead throughout the remainder of the third quarter, but Marietta led 40-39 at the end of three quarters.

The Yellow Jackets continued their strong play and grabbed their first lead of the game early in the fourth quarter. The Pioneers quickly regained their lead when Taylor converted a pair of foul shots, to give Marietta a 45-44 edge. The teams traded baskets and the lead, before back to back buckets from Baldwin Wallace forced a Pioneers timeout at the 4:32 mark of the final quarter.

Late in the fourth quarter, with Marietta down four, Lett forced a turnover and Taylor converted the layup, and with a full court press on the Pioneers forced another turnover that resulted in a three pointer from Lett to give Marietta a 60-59 edge. The Pioneers got their third consecutive steal as Brooks had the steal and Jo Herd-Middlebrooks converted the layup to put Marietta ahead, 62-59 with 22 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter. The Yellow Jackets hit a three to tie the game with five seconds remaining, and the Pioneers took a timeout to advance the ball to the front court. Marietta drew up an inbounds play to get Enochs open for a layup and the Pioneers grabbed a two point edge and won the game, 64-62.

Marietta was led by Lett as she had a game high 15 points and grabbed four rebounds.

Taylor added 12 points, and had a game high eight rebounds for the Pioneers. Enochs added 12 points, three rebounds, and a pair of steals in the game.

Marietta will return to the hardwood Saturday when it hosts OAC opponent Heidelberg University with the game set to tip at 3 p.m.