HIRAM, OHIO -- With just over two seconds remaining and the score tied, senior guard Calysia Smyers (Akron/Coventry) connected on one-of-two free-throws that resulted in a 59-58 win by the Hiram College women's basketball team against Heidelberg University in a non-conference game at Price Gymnasium.
Hiram (4-5 overall) scored the game's first point before any time came off the clock as the result of a technical foul on Heidelberg. Smyers would also be the Terrier player to make one-of-two free-throws for the early lead. Heidelberg (3-4 overall) rebounded by scoring six unanswered points to lead 6-1 early in the contest. The first half featured seven ties and three lead changes, but the Student Princes would lead for the majority of the first period until the 5:38 minute mark when junior guard Danielle Day (Newbury) hit a pair of free-throws to put the Terriers up by a point, 18-17. Both teams traded leads in the final minutes with Heidelberg leading by as many as four points, 25-21, just before halftime. Hiram freshman forward Christy Griffin (Middlefield/Cardinal) scored the final points of the half and cut the Heidelberg lead to just a basket, 25-23, at the intermission.
Heidelberg jumped out to an early five-point advantage to begin the final 20 minutes, but Hiram came right back with five unanswered points of its own on a three-pointer by junior guard/forward Alexis Kemper (Centerville) and a bucket by junior guard Marisa Thomas (Lorain/Amherst) to even the score for the ninth time, 30-30, with 17:52 left to play. The Student Princes looked to pull away later in the half leading by as many as six points on two occassions, including a 40-34 margin with 11:42 to go. The Terriers rallied again and later tied the game for the 13th time with just over a minute left in regulation thanks to a jumper by Griffin to make the score 58-58. Both teams missed a pair of scoring chances in the final 1:10, but Hiram would get a final chance with just over two seconds remaining. Smyers got the ball just beyond the mid-court stripe when she was fouled by a Heidelberg player on a reach-in, sending her to the free-throw line with a chance to win the game. Smyers made one-of-two attempts to give the Terriers a one-point edge. The Student Princes got the rebound on the free-throw miss and called timeout to set up a final shot attempt. Heidelberg launched a three-point shot as time expired, but the shot hit the side of the rim, sealing a 59-58 victory for Hiram.
Heidelberg shot 34.4 percent (21-of-61) from the field for the game, including 48.4 percent (15-of-31) in the second half. The Student Princes had three players score in double-figures led by Kathleen Phillips with a game-high 19 points on eight-of-24 shooting (33.3 percent). Megan Miller and Jordan Ickes were the two other players in double-digits with 11 points each.
Hiram also shot well in the second half, converting 41.9 percent (13-of-31) of its attempts, and 35.8 percent (19-of-53) overall for the game. The Terriers also went to the free-throw line 28 times in the game and made 17 (60.7 percent). The Terriers had one player score in double figures in Kemper with 12 on three-of-seven shooting (42.9 percent). In addition, Day grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds.
Hiram will travel to Bethany, W.Va. for a non-conference game against Bethany College on Saturday, Dec. 15. The game is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m.