The OIT Owls lead a 69-36 victory in the weekend match against the New Hope Christian College Deacons from Eugene. This brings the Owl’s record up to 2-0 for the season thus far. After a smooth lay-up by number 31 forward Megan Whetstone, the Owls were first up on the board.
A block and a return by the Owls and then a three-pointer by the Deacons to challenge, brought the score to 4-3 as the Owl’s laid the foundation for their leading Guard Karly LeVeque’s beautiful three- point shot and a fierce drive to the goal which kept the Owls ahead, 9-7.
A near-perfect recovery by NHCC’s Ellie Gould, 11, had the Deacons looming close- behind, but traveling and various fouls held them at 7 points on the board as the Owls began to gain momentum.
Deacons’ guard Mariah Mendez-Oliver,21, tied up the game 11-11 at 13 minutes . NHCC forward Sasha Sims’ smooth three point shot put the Deacons ahead for just a moment before the Owls tied it up 14 – with the Owls players shouting out their support and the shot clock from the sidelines, it was a sink or swim situation for the both teams as the game heated up partway into the half.
Owl guard Carrie Thibault’s drive to the goal was thwarted by the Deacon defense keeping the score 16-17.
OIT began to break away with a slight 23-19 lead at 8 minutes left in the half, but the score remained the same with both teams going head to head until, at 6 minutes to go, Jessica Logan, 10 of NHCC brought the score to up 22-23.
Another Owl 3-pointer to counter to the Deacon’s attack, Thibault helped the team pull away from their opponents once Oregon’s consistent scoring began to take hold with yet another 3-point shot by guard Ashley Vandenbrink making for a 29-22 lead at four minutes left.
With 8 fouls by the Owls and 10 fouls by the Deacons in the first half, it was clear that despite Oregon’s lead, the teams were well matched as they duked it out under the net.
The Owls pulled ahead with 38 points but skillful blocking by Deacon’s guard Mariah Mendez-Oliver kept them there to close out the half.
If the first part of the game was exciting, the second half was even more so as the Owls screeched ahead achieving a 20 point lead by 12:00 minutes.
Another 3 point shot by Thibault early- in was challenged by the speed and quickness by the NHCC Deacons as they stayed relatively close behind proving themselves a more than worthy adversary to the Owls’ rapid scoring and graceful drive.
However try as they might the Deacon’s fell to the Owl’s consistent scoring and head coach Scott Meredith’s successful strategies, which ultimately won the Owl’s the the game.
Freshman guard Rebekah Matteri, 21, is happy with the how the season is going thus far: “We got two wins under our belt so that’s a good thing.” Matteri says that a strong point for the team this year may lie within the Owl’s guards. “We got a lot of quick guards this year so it’s gonna fun to hopefully run the floor and just have a good season.”