Women's hoops roundup (March 11): Loyola tops Bucknell to reach Patriot League final; Coppin St. to MEAC final
From Sun staff and news services|
Mar 12, 2016 | 12:00 AM
Loyola Maryland outscored second-seeded Bucknell 36-16 in the second and third quarters to build a lead of as many as 20 points Friday night in West Point, N.Y., and the third-seeded Greyhounds advanced to their first-ever Patriot League championship game with a 65-53 semifinal win over the Bison in women's basketball.
With the win, Loyola will face No.1 seed Army West Point on its home floor tonight at 6 for the Patriot League title. The game will air live on CBS Sports Network.
Steph Smith made three 3-pointers and was 6-for-11 from the field to score a career-high 20 points, while Colleen Marshall added 22 points and four assists for the Greyhounds.
A low-scoring first quarter saw Bucknell (24-7) lead 10-9 after the first 10 minutes, but a 3-pointer by Lauren Daugherty 1:12 into the second quarter put the Greyhounds (16-15) in front 12-10.
Nearly three minutes later, Bucknell, which went 17-1 in conference play and was the Patriot League regular-season co-champion, tied the score at 14, but Smith hit her first 3-pointer on the Greyhounds' next possession to put Loyola in front for good.
Kyi English scored the Bison's next four points, but another 3-pointer by Smith with 3:21 left in the half gave the Greyhounds a five-point advantage.
Marshall scored the last five of the first half with a jumper at 1:22 and a 3-pointer four seconds before the halftime buzzer, extending the Greyhounds' advantage to 31-21.
Loyola closed the third on an 11-0 run that saw it go up 45-26 on a bucket by Bri Betz-White with 51 seconds left.
English scored on the first possession of the fourth quarter, ending a scoreless stretch of 5:41 for the Bison. A free throw by Betz-White at 8:50 and a layup by Smith with 8:05 to go pushed the Greyhounds' lead to 48-28.
A 3-pointer by Bucknell with just over two minutes left cut the deficit to 11, but Loyola made eight of 10 free throws over the next 1:17 to keep the lead above 10.
Janelle Lane (Woodlawn) scored a game-high 20 points to lead fourth-seeded Coppin State (15-15) to a 63-53 win over fifth-seeded Morgan State (13-17) in the quarterfinals of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference women's basketball tournament in Norfolk, Va., on Thursday.
No. 4 seed Coppin State 81, No. 9 South Carolina State 62: Genesis Lucas and Amber Griffin combined for 38 points to lead the Eagles to a win over the Bulldogs in a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference tournament semifinal Friday at Scope Arena in Norfolk, Va.
Coppin State (16-15) advances to today's championship game against No. 2 North Carolina A&T State, which beat No. 3 Hampton, 63-54. Tipoff is about 3:30 p.m.
"As of yesterday and Monday, the ladies have just been playing great basketball," coach Derek Brown said. "I've seen them play at their worst and I've seen them play at their best."
Lucas scored 21 points on 7-for-12 shooting, and Griffin went 7-for-14 to finish with 17 for Coppin State, which shot 54.7 percent (29-for-53) from the field, 50 percent (6-for-12) from 3-point range and 73.9 percent (17-for-23) from the free-throw line.
Jasmine Coleman scored 14 points and Bria Ratliff added 13 off the bench for South Carolina State (13-16), which upset top-seeded Bethune-Cookman on Wednesday to reach the semifinals.
South Carolina State whittled its deficit to as little as four in the second quarter and was within five after a layup by Brittany Drumgoole with 5:32 left in the half. But Coppin State closed the half on an 11-0 run to widen the margin. Griffin had seven of the Eagles' 11 points, and she and Lucas hit 3-pointers to help send Coppin State into the half with a 38-22 lead.
The Eagles led by double figures the entire second half. South Carolina State cut its deficit to 10 points on five occasions in the fourth quarter, the last being at 69-59 on a jumper by Coleman with 3:27 left. But Coppin State outscored the Bulldogs 12-3 the rest of the way.
Keena Samuels scored 13 points, Janelle Lane (Woodlawn) added 10 and Tanaysa Henderson had eight, including two 3-pointers, for Coppin State. The Eagles matched their season high with six 3-pointers, two each by Henderson, Griffin and Lucas. Jordan Swails also scored eight points and grabbed a game-high seven rebounds off the bench for Coppin State.
"We've been practicing on shooting the ball and taking good shots," Lucas said. "It's a habit now for us to take good shots and to feel good about the shots we're taking."