SPRINGFIELD, Ohio –After a tough loss in the opening day of the Charles B. Zimmerman Memorial Classic to the host, Wittenberg, the Lady Yellow Jackets' basketball team bounced back with a hard-fought 45-42 win over Albion on Saturday.
The game began with a slow start, as it took both offenses a while to get going on the afternoon. A Megan Zachrich jumper with a little over five minutes into the game gave the Yellow Jackets a 7-6 lead. DC opened up a four-point advantage with six and a half minutes left in the opening stanza before Albion's Taylor Nugent hit a layup to cut the Defiance lead in half at 16-14.
The Purple and Gold closed the half well after the Albion bucket, as the Jackets used a 7-2 run over the last five minutes of the half to take a 23-16 lead into the break. The run was capped off by an Ashley Birchmeier layup with only seconds remaining on the clock.
Senior Kim Comden led the way for Defiance at halftime, as the center had six points and seven rebounds at the break. Both DC and Albion struggled from the floor in the first, as the Jackets were 8-24 from the field while Albion converted just 7-25 attempts.
The Yellow Jackets increased their seven point lead to double digits early in the second frame, as DC scored six of the first nine points in the second to take a 29-19 lead.
With just under 10 minutes remaining in the game, the Britons chipped the Defiance lead down to six points after two Katie Thompson free throws moved the score to 33-27. Albion continued the comeback by drawing within one possession with 5:40 remaining at 34-31 before Comden scored a layup to increase the lead back up to five with five minutes left.
The Purple and Gold's five-point advantage quickly evaporated, as the Britons scored six unanswered points in a minute span to grab its first lead of the second half with just over four minutes to go in the contest.
The Jackets answered Albion's challenge with five-straight points of their own, thanks to a timely Erica King trey and a layup from Hannah Harshman. With a 43-38 lead with 1:32 remaining, Harshman stepped up to the free throw line and converted two big free throws to grow the DC lead to seven.
The Britons staged a frantic comeback in the closing 90 seconds to draw within three points of the Purple and Gold but were unable to level the score, as DC held on to win its sixth game in the month of December and move its record to 7-4.
The Yellow Jackets were led by King and Comden on Saturday afternoon. King led the team in scoring with 13 points, while going 3-6 from beyond the arc. The three three-pointers give King 141 for her career, just two shy of tying Courtney Schmersal for the all-time Defiance record of three-point field goals made in a career.
Comden's solid performance placed the center on the Charles B. Zimmerman Memorial Classic All-Tournament Team. The Defiance native recorded her third double-double of the season and seventh of her career against the Britons, as the senior scored 11 points and grabbed 11 boards in the win. The center has now scored in double figures in 9-of-11 games this season.
The six wins in a single month is the most for the DC women's basketball program since January of 2010 when the squad won 7-of-8 games in the month.
The Purple and Gold return home for a Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference showdown against rival Bluffton University on January 2. The tip is scheduled for 6:00 p.m.