Red Devils Start Ohio Trip With 96-56 Rout of Wooster

Photo courtesy of Bob Hunt.
Photo courtesy of Bob Hunt.

WOOSTER, Ohio – Eureka College senior guard Hayley Reneau (Washington, Ill./Washington H.S./Illinois Central) delivered a balanced effort with a game-high 21 points, seven steals and six assists, sophomore Ashley Harfst (Saunemin, Ill./Pontiac H.S.) logged another double-double with 18 points and 14 rebounds and the Red Devils earned their largest non-conference road victory over an NCAA Division III opponent since 1994 in a 96-56 drubbing of Wooster, Thursday afternoon in Wooster, Ohio.

The final 40-point margin was Eureka's biggest road win since an 83-42 triumph at MacMurray on Jan. 7, 2017. Thursday's decision also marked the Red Devils' widest margin of victory in a road game against a non-conference Division III foe since beating Principia 106-65 on Feb. 17, 1994.

Eureka sputtered out of the gate Thursday and trailed the hosts 10-2 less than five minutes into the action. Abigail Hilton (Moweaqua, Ill./Central A&M) capped Eureka's 11-3 burst and pulled EC into a 13-13 tie with 2:04 left in the first period, but the Scots answered with six in a row and led 19-18 at the end of the quarter.

The Red Devils didn't take their first lead of the game until the final three minutes of the first half. Kerrigan Dura (Edwards, Ill./Brimfield H.S.) hit a jumper with 2:25 left in the half to give the Red Devils a 31-29 lead, part of a 9-0 surge that ended with EC in front 36-29 on another Dura bucket with 1:29 to play. EC had a 38-31 lead at halftime.

Wooster clawed within two at the 7:13 mark of the third period when Cat Fiorito scored for a 41-39 score. The visitors answered with 10 unanswered points and finished the frame on a 25-8 burst that left EC in front 66-47 after 30 minutes. The Red Devils outscored the Scots 28-16 in the quarter.

Eureka erupted for 30 points in the final period. The cushion reached 30 points when Lexi Dooley (Sutter, Ill./Warsaw H.S.) scored inside for an 86-55 margin with 5:23 left. The Scots scored only nine points in the final quarter and were held without a field goal over the final 6-minutes, 42-seconds. The final 40-point lead was EC's biggest of the game.

Six Red Devils scored in double figures, including all five starters for the second time this season. Dura registered a double-double with 12 points, 11 rebounds and a game-high seven assists. Samantha Sarnes (Havana, Ill./Havana H.S.) tied a career high with 17 points off the bench. Eureka shot 45 percent from the field and went 21-for-25 from the foul line. EC hauled down a season-high 62 rebounds and Kennedy Dura (Edwards, Ill./Brimfield H.S.) had three of Eureka's season-high nine blocked shots.

Anna Gibbs netted 13 points for the Scots. Wooster shot just 26 percent from the field, 24 percent from 3-point range and went 7-for-16 from the charity stripe.

Thursday's game was Eureka's first-ever matchup with Wooster and its first game against a North Coast Athletic Conference team since a 74-46 loss to DePauw on Jan. 7, 1997.

Eureka will have less than 24 hours to prepare for the final leg of its two-game trip to Ohio. The Red Devils will meet Muskingum at noon CST on Friday in New Concord, Ohio.