Exhausting Fight Ends in Crusader Loss; Timmerman Reaches 1,000

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COLUMBUS- After a tireless battle for the lead, the Capital University women's basketball team fell a single point short in a loss to the Marietta Pioneers, 54-53, in an Ohio Athletic Conference match at the Capital Center.

The Crusaders (13-9 overall, 8-7 OAC) put forth a valiant effort as they challenged the Pioneers (8-14, 3-12) throughout the entire game. Capital was never more than four points behind and held the lead for almost twice as long as their opponent.

The leading scorer for the Crusaders was senior forward Stacy Timmerman (New Bremen, Ohio) with 20 points and eight rebounds (six offensive). She also became the 19th player in Capital women's basketball history to reach 1,000 career points. Freshman guard Simonne Gage (Dayton, Ohio) also made a contribution with 10 points and three rebounds. 

The team not only celebrated Timmerman's achievement, but also gave recognition to its three seniors. Timmerman and guard Rebekah Will (Millbury, Ohio), along with student coach Libby Ladrach, were recognized for their hard work and untiring dedication to the team.

"Any time you have seniors in your program for four years, you're always thankful," Capital coach Dixie Jeffers said. "You're always blessed to have kids stay in your program and believe in what you're trying to do. Kudos to our seniors for executing on the floor and succeeding in a high-caliber academic program."

In the first half, the Crusaders never allowed the Pioneers to lead by more than two points and held the lead for the majority of the half. Shooting 37 percent with 12 points in the paint, compared to the Pioneers 31 percent with 14 points in the paint, the Crusaders finished out the half ahead 24-20.

As the second half began, it was clear it would be no less of a battle. Both teams continued to fight to hold the lead, where junior guard Cookie Geroski (Fostoria, Ohio) strongly contributed with six second-half rebounds and eight overall. By the end of the game, the score had been tied 10 times and the lead changed 11 times. In the final minutes the Crusaders fell just shy of defeating the Pioneers as Timmerman's baseline jumper in the closing moments fell just short, and time expired before Capital could regain possession. 

Capital ended the game shooting a total of 35 percent, compared to Marietta's 41 percent. The Pioneers' bench outscored Capital's reserves 21-11 in the contest.

The Crusaders are back on the road this weekend to face the Otterbein Cardinals at 5 p.m. in Westerville, Ohio. The game is the first half of a women's-men's doubleheader against the Cardinals.