TIFFIN – A 23-3 run over a 7:30 span in the second half catapulted the Heidelberg University women's basketball team to a big win over OAC rival Muskingum University. The Student Princes beat the Muskies 85-74, powered by 31 points from senior Kathleen Phillips.
Eleven Student Princes contributed points in the win, including 10 from Paige Ricketts.
The win is the third conference victory of the season for Heidelberg, equaling their total from the past three years combined.
Near the end of a close first half, Heidelberg (10-3, 3-3 OAC) took a nine-point lead into the locker room. Off a feed from Ricketts, AJ Stuck knocked down a 3-pointer in the waning seconds of the period, giving HU their largest lead of the half.
In the first four minutes after halftime, Muskingum (4-8, 2-4 OAC) cut the lead down to five points.
Then the Student Princes erupted.
The Tricolor outscored the Muskies by 20 points, thanks to pesky defense and strong ball-movement offensively. During the stretch, Phillips had 10 points and Jackie Abrecht nailed back-to-back 3-pointers. In the course of the HU run, the Muskies were 1-of-10 from the floor and had six turnovers.
"We began to move the ball very well," said Phillips, who sits 10 points shy of becoming the fourth player in program history to surpass 1,500 career points. "It really got our offense in rhythm, which helps us turn up the intensity on defense."
After Heidelberg began to insert their reserves into the game, the Muskies crawled back in with a bevy of frenzied 3-point shots. At one point, the HU lead had dwindled into the single digits, but solid free throw shooting by Phillips and Ricketts kept the Muskies on the hook.
"After our last game (a 29-point loss at Wilmington), it was important for us to come out with focus and intensity," said first-year head coach Morgan Shriver. "We over-prepared for this game...we knew exactly what Muskingum would bring at us. I thought our girls had the right mindset."
At 10-3, the Student Princes are off their best start since the 2000-01 squad, which also started 10-3. Heidelberg has not lost consecutive games all season.
Heidelberg will travel to Ohio Northern University on Wednesday. Tipoff with the Polar Bears is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.