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Big Red routs Cards for second win

Candise Love had 16 points and six assists in DU's win over Otterbein.
Candise Love had 16 points and six assists in DU's win over Otterbein.

Denison shot 57 percent from the field and had four players score in double-figures. Those factors helped the Big Red pick up a dominating 81-59 victory over Otterbein University on Saturday afternoon from the Spurlock Center in Franklin, Ind.

The Big Red scored 15 of the game's first 19 points to build an 11-point less than six minutes into the contest.  Otterbein scored on its next three possessions to shrink the deficit to four.  Now trailing 24-17, the Cardinals went on an 11-4 run to tie the contest at 28-28.  With 3:47 left in the opening period, Jenna Ripepi knocked down a three-pointer to give Otterbein its first lead of the game at 31-30.

DU answered with back-to-back buckets from freshman Jordan Holmes and senior Aubrey Rogers.  Holmes also added a pair of free throws to extend the Big Red's lead to 36-31 with 1:39 on the clock.  After a Tabatha Piper jumper trimmed the deficit to three, Denison rattled off six-straight to close out the period and take a 42-33 lead into the locker room.  Junior Mary Margaret Habel hit a triple, while senior Gretchen Staubach converted an old-fashioned three-point-play with 20 seconds to play.

Denison went 18-for-28 (64 percent) in the first half and closed out the opening 20 minutes with a 12-2 run.  DU was also 4-for-5 at the charity stripe in the first period.

After surrendering a three-pointer to open the second frame, the Big Red rattled off 10 of the next 11 points to build a 15-point lead early in the stanza.  During that 10-1 run, five different DU players chipped in offensively.  Senior Mikaela Freundlich opened the run with a 3-pointer, while junior Candise Love knocked down a jumper.  Staubach also scored in the paint, while Habel split a pair at the free-throw line.  Sophomore Kellie Arter capped off the spurt with a bucket off an assist from Love.

Otterbein slowly chipped away at the lead, trimming the margin to 58-51 midway through the half.  However, another 8-0 run by the Denison offense rebuilt the 15-point advantage.  The Big Red maintained its double-digit lead for the final 9+ minutes en route to their second win in as many games.

The Big Red went 15-for-30 in the second half en route to a 33-for-58 (57 percent) performance from the floor.  They also shot 4-for-9 from three-point range and scored 34 points in the paint.  The Denison bench outscored Otterbein's reserves 29-16.  The Cards were 22-for-68 (32 percent) from the field and 43 percent (6-for-14) from beyond the arc.

Love finished with a team-high 16 points and six assists, while Staubach added 15 points.  Both Love and Staubach went 7-for-10 (70 percent) from the field in 33 and 26 minutes, respectively.  Holmes posted her first-career double-double after scoring 11 points and grabbing a game-best 15 rebounds.  The first-year post also finished three blocks shy of a triple-double.  Her seven blocks were the most in a game by a DU player since Carolyn Simpson posted seven rejections against Hiram on Feb. 2, 2008.  Habel rounded out the list of double-digit scorers with 12 points on 4-of-8 from the field and 3-of-4 from the foul line.

Madi Miller paced Otterbein with a game-high 18 points, while Piper chipped in 13 tallies.  Amariah Huck grabbed nine rebounds, while Chelsea Reed dished out four assists.

At the conclusion of the Franklin Tip-Off Classic, Staubach was named to the all-tournament team after averaging 14.5 points per game and shooting 77 percent (13-for-17) from the field.

Denison improves to 2-0 on the year, while the Cardinals fall to 0-2.  The Big Red returns to action on Wednesday when they take on Mount St. Joseph in their home opener.  Tip-off from Livingston Gymnasium is scheduled for 7 p.m.

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