Ohio Women’s Basketball Falls Short to Central Michigan in a Heartbreaker

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MT. PLEASANT, MI.– The Ohio Women’s basketball team (3-15, 1-6 MAC) faced Central Michigan (3-14, 1-5 MAC), Wednesday night at McGuirk Arena. The Bobcats fell to the Chippewas 66-69 and were led by Yaya Felder as she hit her new career high in scoring. Felder grabbed 40 points for the Bobcats going 12-of-24 from the field, 3-of-10 from the three, and 13-of-14 from the free throw line. Caitlyn Kroll led the Bobcats in rebounding with 9 total, all defensive, followed by 7 from Abby Garnett; 2 Offensive and 5 defensive rebounds.

Overall, the Bobcats were 20-of-56 (35.7%) from the field, 7-of-31 (22.6%) from the three, and 19-of-24 (79.2%) from the free throw line. Ohio also grabbed 39 collective rebounds, had 7 assists, and freshman Cassidy Lafler snagged 2 steals.

Central Michigan challenged the Bobcats from the jump, winning the tipoff and securing a three pointer within the first minute of play, getting the initial 3-0 lead. Yaya Felder quickly responded to the intensity, throwing up a three Assisted by Kate Dennis. Central Michigan came right back with another three pointer before Jasmine Hale collected a layup off a Chippewa turnover. Caitlyn Kroll led the Bobcats in the first 10 minutes with 4 defensive rebounds out of their 12.

Going into the next ten minutes of play the Bobcats were down 15-19, with CMU being led by forward Sydney Harris. The Bobcats began to close in on Harris with defensive pressure and rebounds, holding her to only 2 points in the second quarter. Ohio began to close in on the Chippewa’s lead with 12 points from Yaya Felder and 4 from Drive Austin. Austin also grabbed 3 defensive rebounds, one leading to an Ohio fast break where Felder made a driving layup and Drew a foul to get the Bobcats closer to the lead. Ohio cut the deficit to 2 with less than a minute to go in the first half before the Chippewas grabbed a three point jumper and two more points in the paint. The score stood at Ohio 32, CMU 39 going into the locker room.

After the Chippewas led the entire first half, the Bobcats came out of the locker room determined to secure their first lead of the game. Abby Garnett initiated the comeback with a three point jumper in the first 30 seconds followed by back to back layups from Felder. Garnett and Felder also grabbed multiple defensive rebounds to give Ohio their first lead of the game with 5 minutes on the clock. The Bobcats were up 47-45 going into the first media timeout of the half. The Chippewas quickly matched Ohio at 50 all before Jasmine Hale regained the lead for Ohio with another three point jumper. The Bobcats continued their scoring run but in the last minute of the third quarter, CMU came back with a fast break and driving layup.

Going into the fourth and final quarter the Bobcats were down by one, 57-58. They quickly regained the lead from a defensive rebound from Caitlyn Kroll that led into a layup from Kate Dennis to get the score to 59-58. Yaya Felder followed with another layup before a media timeout was called giving the Bobcats a chance to reset. Caitlyn Kroll led Ohio in the final minutes of the contest with 3 defensive rebounds to give the Bobcats more Offensive opportunities and allowing Felder to grab 7 more points on the board. The fourth quarter went back and forth with the two teams being tied up at 66 apiece and 1:35 left on the clock. It was Sydney Harris who hit a three pointer from downtown to give CMU a 69-66 lead before the Bobcats called their final timeout. Coming out for the final play, Ohio had possession, allowing one more shot to go up from Caitlyn Kroll. The three pointer circled the rim twice before falling out, declaring a 66-69 loss to the Chippewas.

Up Next: The Ohio Women’s basketball team will head home to the Convocation Center where they will play Ball State on January 28th. The MAC contest will be tipped off at 1pm and can be streamed live on ESPN3.

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