WASHINGTON – The Gallaudet University women's basketball team won a thrilling North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) quarterfinal game over Bryn Athyn College, 76-70, here Tuesday night before a spirited crowd of 448 in the Field House. Senior guard Zamica Gage (Washington, D.C.) led the way for the Bison (15-11) with 33 points in the final home game of the season.
With only seven minutes and 14 seconds left in the game, Bryn Athyn junior guard Keana Schoennagle sunk her first shot of the game from behind the 3-point line. The shot pulled the Lions (15-11) to within two points, 54-52. Gage answered with a jump shot before Schoennagle answered with two big shots within 55 seconds. Her 3-pointer at the 5:59 mark gave the Lions a lead, 58-56, its first advantage since the opening minutes of the first quarter.
The fourth quarter was back-and-forth the entire way as fans, for both teams, were standing and cheering on their team. The game came down to some key free throws made in the final minute.
Gage was sent to the free throw line with 32 seconds left in regulation and made both attempts as GU led by four, 70-64, and forced Bryn Athyn to take a timeout to draw up its next play. On the inbound Schoennagle turned the ball over as sophomore Darriyan Thomas (Vallejo, Calif.) swooped in to make a steal and got fouled and poked in the face on the play. Thomas had to exit as senior guard Danielle Warren (San Jose, Calif.) came off the bench to make both free throws with 25 seconds left.
Both teams traded layups before sophomore Kelsey Hudson (Blissfield, Mich.) was sent to the line with six seconds, where she made both shots. Hudson finished the game with eight points and 10 rebounds.
The Bison kept a healthy lead in the first half. GU's largest lead over the Lions was by 15 points in the second quarter. Gallaudet led 39-26 at the half.
Seven free throws in the third quarter, three of which happened as time ran out on the last play, helped Bryn Athyn bridge the gap to only eight points, 54-46. The Lions outscored the Bison by five, 20-15, in the third quarter.
Gage totaled 33 points, six rebounds, six steals and four assists while sophomore Sabina Shysh (Tucson, Ariz.) added 12 points, three rebounds and three assists. Senior forward Danielle Morris (St. Louis, Mich.) played well under the net with 15 rebounds and nine points.
The Lions were led by junior guards Je'la Watson and Kristina Clark (13 rebounds) who scored 21 and 18 points, respectively.
- Gage has scored 30 or more points four times this season
- This is the third time Morris has pulled down 15 or more rebounds
- The Lions bench scored 35 points
- GU held a 36-28 edge over the Lions in the paint
- Both teams earned 10 second chance points
- GU scored 22 points off 16 Bryn Athyn turnovers
- This is GU's first postseason win since Feb. 25, 2014, when it defeated St. Elizabeth, 69-61, at home
Gallaudet University will next travel to Lancaster, Pa., for the NEAC Women's Basketball Final Four which is being hosted by the overall top-seed Lancaster Bible College. GU will play SUNY Poly (21-5), the top-seed of the North Division, on Saturday, Feb. 27, at 8 p.m. These two teams met once in the regular season where the Wildcats won 68-51 on Jan. 17 in Marcy, N.Y.