BANGOR, Maine - Sydney Allen led all scorers in Newman Gymnasium Friday night as the #1 seeded Husson University Eagles (18-8) defeated the #5 seeded NVU-Lyndon Hornets (11-15) by a final score of 74-61 in North Atlantic Conference semifinal action.
IN THE ACTION:
Breaking out ahead early on their home court, the Eagles put together an 8-2 advantage over the first three minutes of action thanks to a four-point contribution from Bailey Donovan. A pair of trips to the free throw line for NVU-Lyndon's Lea Crompton and Alissa Mitchell helped bring the score back within a bucket, trailing 11-8 midway through the opening frame. The Hornets continued their offensive momentum over the next four minutes, grabbing their first lead of the evening on a downtown hoop from Mitchell, 16-15. The lead was short-lived as the Eagles recaptured a 19-16 advantage heading into the second quarter after two back-to-back jumpers from Donovan.
A quick Faith Poirier three-pointer brought the game back to a 19-19 stalemate less than a minute into the second quarter. Shortly after, Husson's Emma Alley added on her first points of the action to help the Eagles recapture the lead (21-19) before a three minute scoring lull took over the court. With 5:45 on the clock, a Joan Overman jumper helped cut the silence while sparking an 18-8 run to nearly finish out the half with a 10-point blanket, but Crompton drove down the court with pure determination to sink a layup right as the buzzer went, cutting into the deficit as the Hornets trailed 37-29 into the break.
Husson held NVU-Lyndon scoreless over the first three minutes of the third period while tacking on seven points (44-29), before Poirier tucked away a pair of threes around a Rylee Moore jumper to bring the score to 48-37. Nearly match each other point-for-point over the remaining six minutes in the quarter, Husson barely clung onto a double-digit lead (55-46) as the two teams advanced into the final quarter with high intensity.
Hornet's Alisha Celly put up points on the scoreboard first to jump into the final quarter, but Husson's Allen snuck in a trio of threes to add onto the Eagles' 66-50 advantage. Allen closed out scoring for the night to lift Husson to a 74-61 win over NVU-Lyndon to advance to the final game of the NAC Championship Tournament.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
Husson's Sydney Allen paced the Eagles with a career-high 29 points on 10-for-13 shooting from field goal range.
Four Hornets netted double-digits in the semifinal match-up, between Alissa Mitchell (17), Faith Poirier (13), Alisha Celley (12), and Lea Crompton (11).
The Eagles outrebounded the Hornets (48-22) while NVU-Lyndon shot an impressive 90.9% (10-11) from the charity stripe to Husson's 56.3% (9-16).
Bailey Donovan added on the lone double-double of the game, between 15 rebounds and 13 points, while adding on three blocks.
The #1 Husson University women's basketball team will advance to the NAC Championship game to face the winner of #2 Maine Maritime Academy Mariners versus #3 UMaine-Farmington Beavers. Tip-off for the NAC Championship game is slated for 2:00pm at Newman Gymnasium on the campus of Husson University.