Natalie Geiger, left, steals the ball as a Grinnell defender tries to stop her.
Natalie Geiger, left, steals the ball as a Grinnell defender tries to stop her.

   There is an adage that “defense wins championships.”

   Lately, the Ripon College women’s basketball team has taken that to heart early in games.

   For the fourth-straight contest, it held its opponent to less than 20-percent shooting in the first half Tuesday as it cruised to a 59-36 home victory against Cornell.

   The Rams shot 20 percent (6 of 30) from the field in the first 20 minutes, which included 18 percent (2 of 11) from behind the 3-point line. They scored 14 points.

   “The team is continuing to improve on the defensive end and it’s exciting,” Ripon head coach Lauren Busalacchi said. “Rebounding got better throughout the game and the team did a good job of executing our screen defense.”

   The defense was especially important for the Red Hawks as the offense wasn’t firing on all cylinders in the first half, which resulted in just a 25-14 lead going into halftime.

Read the full story, which includes information about strong defensive performances against Grinnell and Lawrence, in the Jan. 10, 2019 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.