Mary Hardin-Baylor Press Release:
SAN ANTONIO, Texas – The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor women’s basketball team turned a rematch of an NCAA Division III National Championships Second Round Game into a repeat as the Cru topped UT Dallas 64-48 Saturday night in San Antonio. UMHB improves to 26-4 and moves into the Sectional Round of the postseason for the second year in a row. The Cru also topped the Comets in the Second Round of last year’s tournament. UT Dallas finishes the season at 23-6.
Madison McCoy’s three-pointer gave the Cru its biggest lead of the game at 29-21 with 7:10 to go in the third quarter. After a Comet basket, Alicia Blackwell converted a three-point play to make it a nine-point UMHB advantage. Alexia Martin answered a UTD free-throw with two of her own to stretch the lead into double figures with 5:49 remaining in the third. The Comets pulled to within six points before Kendall Rollins hit back-to-back three-pointers to put the Cru up 40-28 with 1:53 left in the period. Blackwell hit a three for the final points of the quarter as UMHB led 43-28 going into the fourth. The Cru defense again clamped down and held the Comets scoreless for the first 2:40 of the final period. UTD would close to within 51-40 with 3:09 remaining. UMHB would ice the game from the free-throw from there and coast to the victory.
Allaira Jones hit a jumper to give the Cru an early 2-0 lead, but UMHB missed its next seven shots from the field and trailed 7-4 at the first media timeout. It would be 10-4 UTD before Brooke Elliott finally hit a layup with 3:30 left in the opening period for the second Cru bucket as the Comets also struggled to put points on the board. It would stay 10-6 through the end of the opening quarter. UMHB was just 2-18 from the field in the first ten minutes and the Cru held UTD to 4-17 from the field. McCoy buried a three-pointer to opening the scoring in the second quarter and she hit another at the 7:07 mark to give UMHB its first lead since the opening seconds at 12-10. The Comets went scoreless for the first 4:05 of the second quarter as the Cru pushed the lead to 14-10. Raenett Hughes ended the UTD drought with a free-throw and Taylor Green and Hughes hit baskets in back-to-back trips to put the Comets up 15-14 with 4:33 left in the first half. The two teams traded scores down the stretch before McCoy hit another three-pointer to give UMHB a 23-19 lead at halftime. The defenses dominated the opening 20 minutes as the Cru shot just 25 percent from the field and UTD hit 27 percent. The two teams combined to go 5-21 from beyond the arc in the first half.
The Cru played without leading scorer and American Southwest Conference West Division Player of the Year Hannah Holt, who was injured at the end of Friday night’s opening round win. McCoy picked up the scoring slack with a game-high 18 points as she hit 4-6 three-pointers. Rollins had 16 points and 10 rebounds and Blackwell had 11 points and eight boards. Jones added a game-high 12 rebounds. UMHB shot 60 percent in the fourth quarter and 35 percent for the game. The Cru also out rebounded the Comets 49-45.
Jordan Maxwell had 12 points to lead UTD and Kelley Skinner had 11 points. Victoria Pena had 10 points and 10 rebounds. The Comets were held to 22 percent shooting from the field and hit just 4-20 from beyond the arc.
The winner will now advance to face Christopher Newport (VA) in the Sectional Tournament next Friday. The Captains moved on with a 74-71 win over Endicott. The host site for the Sectional Tournament should be announced on Sunday evening. George Fox (OR) and Amherst (MA) will be the other two schools in that pod.