The Wilmington College women's basketball team once again qualified for the Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) Tournament in 2019-20. There, one of the nation's top scoring offenses pushed defending champions John Carroll University to the brink. This is the story of the 2019-20 Lady Quaker Basketball team.
The Quakers opened the season with two annual tournaments - the Damon's/Hampton Inn Tip-off Tournament and the Fred Raizk Memorial Classic on consecutive weekends in mid-November. The opening game against Miami University-Middletown, held on Nov. 15, was a runaway.
Wilmington's opponent in the tip-off tournament title game was Denison University, a team that would go on to finish 19-9 and earn a runner-up finish in the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) Tournament title game.
Neither team led by more than eight points, but the Big Red, led by 10 seniors, pulled away in the fourth quarter.
The following weekend, Wilmington wouldn't make the finals as Franklin College got hit from distance in the final five minutes and escaped Hermann Court with a 78-76 victory.
The Quakers rebounded, however, defeating Hiram College 84-76 thanks to 20-plus margin in rebounding. Michelle Lee led the way with 22 points.
Wilmington's next test came against other Quaker school, Earlham College, for a Quaker Bowl Rivalry game on Dec. 2, 2019.
The hosts led 20-13 after one quarter, but a 30-18 outburst in the second 10 minutes gave WC a comfortable halftime lead.
Wilmington kept its foot on the gas in the third, outscoring Earlham 21-13.
The Fightin' Quakers would go on to lead by as many as 26 points en route to a victory.
Wilmington shot a team-best 51.7 percent (32-of-62) from the floor along with 6-of-17 from the distance and 12-of-17 from the free throw line. Earlham was held to 39.7 percent (23-of-58) from the field and 0-of-8 from beyond the three-point arc.
The next road trip that followed didn't go as well. Capital University, thanks to a 30-8 start in the first dozen minutes, held on to defeat Wilmington 82-76.
Wilmington returned home to face defending champions John Carroll, which left Fred Raizk Arena with a double-digit win.
The Quakers wouldn't let the slide go another game, however, as a weekday trip to Otterbein yielded an 88-78 triumph.
After a defeat at the hands of Baldwin Wallace University, Wilmington got back on track against Muskingum University on January 22.
The hosts led 44-39 at halftime, but the Fighting Muskies battles back to regain a one-possession lead in the third quarter.
The Quakers broke the game open in the fourth quarter and coasted to an 88-69 victory.
After sweeping Muskingum, Wilmington turned its sights to sweeping Marietta when the Pioneers came to Hermann Court on February 15.
The Pioneers got out to a 9-2 advantage from the opening tip-off, but the Quakers scored on their final three possessions of the first quarter to lead 18-14.
Wilmington led by two (29-27) at halftime, but opened up a 9-point advantage after 10 minutes.
The Quakers, led by 25 points by McKayla Binkley, held the lead in the fourth quarter for the victory.
Unlike the first two meetings, this OAC Tournament quarterfinal was close all the way through.
John Carroll led the majority of the game, but Wilmington, playing without its starting point guard Kennedy Lewis, battled valiantly and took a slim lead in the middle of the third quarter.
JCU pulled away in the fourth, ending the Quakers' season with a 79-67 loss.