MIDWAY, KY – In the team's first playoff appearance in three years, Head Coach Brenda Baker and the Lady Trailblazers came hungry for a win on Wednesday, as they knocked off #2 seed Midway University on the road 79-67. Ohio Christian will now return home for a semi-final matchup with the #4 seed Cougars of Indiana University Kokomo.
Despite seeing starting PG Carolane Cox (SR/Chillicothe, OH) leave the game due to injury less than a minute into the game, the Lady Trailblazers quickly established their presence with a 22-point first quarter. Cox later returned to the game, as OCU controlled the momentum for most of the half.
Leading by one after halftime, the Lady Trailblazers saw Midway begin to hit open looks, leading to a narrow three-point lead entering the final 10 minutes. Despite the momentum shift, OCU relied on one of their leaders to carry them home, as Staci Pertuset (SR/West Union, OH) scored 12 of her 38 points in the final stretch to seal the upset.
Pertuset ended the night shooting 14-24 from the floor and 9-14 from the free throw line. On top of her 38 points, she added eight steals and seven rebounds. In the absence of Cox being on the floor for some of the game, Helaina Limas (SO/Medina, OH) stepped up and delivered, scoring 16 points and grabbing eight boards. Despite not having her most productive night on offense, Rachel Gillum (FR/Springboro, OH) provided a much needed boost on the defensive end, carrying a presence in the paint by grabbing 16 rebounds.
"We had great energy for this game," said Head Coach Brenda Baker. "They have worked so hard to get to this point and they were not done playing. Carolane went down with an injury and we rallied around her and played for each other. This team is special and I am proud of every single one of them!"
Ohio Christian will now prepare for a matchup with the #4 seed out of the West division, Indiana University Kokomo. Tipoff is scheduled for 1:00 PM EST on Saturday in the Maxwell Center.
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