Battle in the Cap Center Favors the Cardinals

Pictured: Emma Burns (photo credit: Joe Maiorana)
Pictured: Emma Burns (photo credit: Joe Maiorana)

By: Ryan Gasser, sports information director

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Capital University women's basketball team hosted archrival Otterbein University and lost in a very physical affair at The Capital Center. The Cardinals defeated the Crusaders, 72-61.

The Cardinals' Ali Cartnal led all scorers and took advantage of any space given when she hit 11-of-19 field goals and marked the scoresheet for 38 of Otterbein's 72 points.

Both teams nearly shot at identical marks in the first quarter but were separated by just four points in favor of the guests, 19-15. Despite Capital shooting at a significantly better mark, their seven turnovers kept the score close heading into halftime. Cap committed seven turnovers in the quarter and Crusaders trailed 32-27 as the teams headed into the locker room.

Capital picked up a point on the Cardinals when they notched 20 to Otterbein's 19 in the third, but the Crusaders were unable to retake the lead at any point in the fourth when Cartnal scored 14 fourth-quarter points, including a perfect 4-for-4 from 3-point range to keep the Crusaders at bay.

Though Capital shot 5-for-9 from distance, Otterbein's perimeter defense kicked into high gear in the fourth quarter and the Crusaders were unable to put up a 3-point in the fourth quarter when they needed to make up some ground. They were also held to just six field goal attempts overall in the quarter and were outscored 21-14, allowing Otterbein to leave The Capital Center with an 11-point victory.

Freshman Emma Burns (Westerville, Ohio/St. Francis Desales) led the Crusaders with 15 points and had three triples. Sophomore Caroline Taphorn (Harrison, Ohio/McAuley) scored 14 points, eight of which came from the charity stripe on her perfect day from the free throw line.

Capital (12-7, 7-5 OAC) will now ready for a road contest on Wednesday night when they head to Marietta, Ohio for a mid-week Ohio Athletic Conference showdown. They will battle the Pioneers at Ban Johnson Arena and tip off at 7 p.m.