The 19th ranked University of Mary Washington women's basketball team dropped a 74-58 decision at eighth ranked Christopher Newport University on Saturday in the 2017 Capital Athletic Conference championship. The Eagles fall to 23-4 on the season, and will await an at large bid to the NCAA Tournament next week.
The game remained tight through the first half, as the teams traded blows back and forth. The Captains held a slim advantage early, leading 8-2 in the opening minutes. The Eagles responded with a big 14-2 run to grab the lead at 16-10 with 2:52 remaining in the first. Brianne Comden, Taylor Barton, and Jordan Pamlanye each had a pair of baskets in the run.
The Captains answered with an 8-0 run of their own to retake the lead at 18-16 with 1:48 remaining. Four CNU players contributed points in their run. The teams traded three point baskets, with McKenzie Jenkins hitting UMW's long range attempt. A Meghan Comer jumper with 48 seconds left tied the score at 21, and that score held until the clock hit zero.
The second quarter was just as even as the first. CNU hit a pair of free throws and a three pointer to grabe a 26-21 lead, but a three point play from Barton cut the deficit to 26-24 with 4:46 left before intermission.
Ashley Evans followed with a pair of free throws, and Jenkins hit another three to give UMW a 29-26 edge with 2:39 left. After a Pamlanye basket upped the Eagle lead to five, Comer scored to push the lead to 33-27, the Eagles' biggest lead of the half.
CNU's Zhara Tannor connected for a pair of three pointers in the final minute, as CNU scored the last eight points of the half, to carry a 35-33 lead to halftime.
The Captains tried repeatedly to add to their lead in the third, but stayed close after each CNU run. The Captains used a pair of Devon Byrd baskets to open up a 41-35 lead, but Comden hit a jumper and Green added a three to trim the margin back to one, at 41-40, with 5:28 left in the frame.
The teams would trade baskets late, before the Captains scored four free throws and a three pointer to assume a 50-42 lead after three quarters.
The Captains extended the run to 14 straight, as they scored seven straight to open the fourth, and held a 57-42 lead with 8:19 remaining. Barton made a pair of free throws and Jenkins hit another triple to cut the deficit to 58-47 with 7:18 left.
CNU's Jasmine Bonivel then scored a pair of three point baskets to open up a 19-point lead with 4:20 remaining. Elizabeth Dofflemyer hit a three pointer and a pair of free throws down the stretch, and Comden and Parker each scored in the final minute to cut the final to 74-58.
Comden led the Eagles with 12 points on 6-10 shooting, while Barton had 11 points, six rebounds, and six assists. Jenkins also scored 11 for UMW. Sam Porter and Tannor each had 13 to lead CNU.
The Eagles shot 45.1% from the field (23-51), making 5-15 three point attempts and 7-7 free throws. CNU shot 40.0% (22-55), making 9-21 three point tries and 21-27 free throws. CNU led in rebounds, 38-26, and forced 26 Eagle turnovers.
Mary Washingotn will await their destiny in the NCAA Tournament when the announcement show is made on Monday at 2:30 p.m. on ncaa.com.