DEFIANCE, OHIO -- A balanced scoring attack by Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology kept the women's basketball squad within range, but Defiance held off a second half rally to earn a 66-54 victory on Saturday.
Senior Alisa Dickerson (Elizabethtown, Ky.) led Rose-Hulman with 21 points and 12 rebounds for her second straight double-double.
Freshman Sheree Williams (Bluffton, S.C.) reached double figures with 12 points and contributed four rebounds. Freshman Grace Gibbs (Parker, Colo./Ponderosa) pitched in with eight points and nine rebounds.
Other key contributors included freshman Chris Rollins (Springfield, Ohio) with seven points and three rebounds; and sophomore Kelsey Ploof (Noblesvlle) with six points, three assists and two rebounds in her season debut.
Hannah Harshman led the Defiance offense with 21 points. Kim Comden also reached double figures with 12 points in the balanced Yellow Jacket attack.
Rose-Hulman battled to hit 80% of a season-high 30 free throws attempts to remain within striking distance. The Engineers also won the rebounding battle by a 38-35 margin.
Defiance led 10-4 early, before Rose-Hulman rallied to knot the score at 14-14 with 6:30 left in the first half on a layup by Williams. Defiance answered with a 13-2 run to gain a 27-16 lead to help take a 31-20 edge into the break.
In the second half, Rose-Hulman turned a double-digit deficit into a 49-41 score on a conventional three-pointer by Dickerson at the 8:40 mark. The Yellow Jackets answerd with a 13-7 spurt to gain a 62-48 lead and secure the victory.
Defiance improved to 2-4 overall and 1-1 in league play, while Rose-Hulman stands 0-4 and 0-1 in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference play. The Fightin' Engineers travel to Manchester College on Wednesday.