Centre, Rhodes, Southwestern & Millsaps Advance To Semifinals

Centre, Rhodes, Southwestern & Millsaps Advance To Semifinals

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Birmingham-Southern College and Homewood High School are serving as host sites for the 2012 Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference men's and women's quarterfinal basketball games. Official Tournament Website | Live Video

SCAC Quarterfinal Game One Recap

The top-seeded team from the East, Centre College limited Hendrix College, the fourth-seed from the West, to just 26.8 percent shooting from the field and cruised to a 65-46 victory in the opening game of the 2012 SCAC Women's Basketball tournament at Homewood High School. Box Score

A basket by sophomore forward Paige Baechleat gave Centre a 12-3 lead at the 15:03 mark but Hendrix went on a 15-5 run over the next eight minutes, culminating with a three-pointer by senior guard Katy Ashley-Pauley to take their first lead of the game at 18-17 with 7:15 remaining in the first half.

That would, however, be the Warriors only lead of the game.

Senior all-America guard Maggie Prewitt scored or assisted on six of the Colonels' next eight baskets, and also chipped in with a pair of free throws, as Centre went on a 21-8 run to close out the half and never looked back.

Prewitt finished with a game-high 18 points and added nine assists and seven rebounds to pace the Centre attack. Junior guard Bridget Winstead was the only other Centre player in double-figures (12 point) as nine different Colonels scored. Head Coach Wendie Austin-Robinson substituted liberally throughout the second half as all 15 players played at least three minutes.

Centre improved to 22-3 with the victory and plays the winner of Colorado College and Rhodes College 5 p.m. tomorrow at Bill Battle Coliseum as the women move to the campus of Birmingham-Southern for Saturday's semifinals.

Hendrix, which was paced by 15 points from senior guard Avery Roller, ends its season with a 7-19 mark. Sophomore forward Jamie Tate, who set the SCAC single-season rebounding record earlier this season, had nine rebounds to establish the new single-season mark at 355 - 35 more than the previous record.

SCAC Quarterfinal Game Two Recap

Rhodes College, the third-seed from the East, scored the game's first eight points and never trailed as the Lynx defeated Colorado College, the second-seed from the West, 71-58, Friday afternoon in the second quarterfinal game of the 2012 SCAC Women's Basketball tournament at Homewood High School. Box Score

Rhodes (18-7) advances to play Centre College at 5 p.m. CT at Bill Battle Coliseum on the campus of Birmingham-Southern College in Saturday's first women's semifinal. The teams split their two contests earlier this year, with each winning on the other's home floor.

The Lynx forced 24 turnovers which they converted into 22 points and held Colorado College to just 34.0 percent from the field. The Tigers entered Friday's contest second in the conference in shooting at 42.2 percent.

Senior guard Sharwil Bell had a game-high 21 points to pace Rhodes. The all-American also had six rebounds, three assists and two steals. First-year guard Sarah Johnson chipped in with 13 points and five assists.

Colorado College (14-12) was led by the 16-point, eight-rebound effort from junior forward Sarah Gunkel. First-year forward Shelby Hanssen added 12 points and senior forward finished with eight points and nine rebounds in her final game as a Tiger.

The Tigers, the top rebounding team in the SCAC, held a 45-35 advantage on the boards.

Sharwil Bell (RC) interview | Matt Dean (RC) interview | Liz Doran (COLO) interview

SCAC Quarterfinal Game Three Recap

Southwestern University had to survive two overtime periods and needed a runner in the lane by first-year forward Madison Eschle with 1.7 seconds remaining to earn a hard-fought 96-95 decision over Birmingham-Southern College in the third women's quarterfinal match-up Friday evening at Homewood High School. Box Score

The game represented the first double overtime game in the 10-year history of the SCAC women's basketball tournament and the combined 191 points are the most scored in a single tournament game.

The top seed out of the SCAC West, Southwestern (15-11) advances to play the winner of Millsaps and Trinity tomorrow evening at 7 p.m. CT, in the second women's semifinal at Bill Battle Coliseum. Birmingham-Southern ends its season at 14-12.

In a game with 11 lead changes and eight ties, Birmingham-Southern appeared to have the upper hand at the end of regulation and during the first overtime period. A free throw by junior forward Alex Adams gave Birmingham-Southern a 74-68 lead with 1:44 remaining in regulation. Southwestern, however, scored the next six points - capped by a game-tying 3-pointer by sophomore forward Chelsea Leader with 46 seconds remaining that ultimately forced overtime.

In the first extra period, Birmingham-Southern took control early, scoring the first eight points and capped by a three-pointer by Kristian Moody gave the Panthers a seven point the 81-74 with 2:37 remaining. Birmingham still led by six with 1:57 left, but a layup by Eschle, two free throws from first-year forward Jordan Owens and a steal and layup by Leader knotted the score at 83-83 with 24 seconds remaining.

Adams put back her own miss with 12 seconds remaining to give Birmingham the 85-83 lead, but junior guard Katelyn Bartell's jumper at the elbow with five seconds left in overtime sent the game into a second extra period. 

Southwestern led througout the second overtime, but Birmingham's Caroline King sank two pressure-packed free throws with 13 seconds remaining to give the Panthers their first lead of the second extra period, 95-94.

After a BSC timeout, Southwestern worked for the final shot and Eschle's runner in the lane with 1.7 tickes remaining gave the Pirates the 96-95 win.

The heros were aplenty on both sides. Senior guard Anna Fareed hit big shot after big shot for the Pirates and led the way with a game-high 28 points. Owens followed with 25 and Leader finished with 24.

Adams led the way for Birmingham-Southern with 25 points and King followed with a double-double of 23 points and 14 rebounds. Senior forward Ashton Spurgin also posted a double-double with 15 points and a game-high 14 rebounds.

Birmingham-Southern outrebounded Southwestern 56-41, but Southwestern had 10 more points off turnovers, 22-12.

Both teams shot above their season averages as Southwestern hit on 44.6 percent (33-74) of its attempts from the floor while Birmingham was successful on 42.3 percent (33-78) of its attempts.

Southwestern made one more free throw (23 to 22) on two more attempts (32 to 30).

Anna Fareed (SU) interview | Kerri Brinkoeter (SU) interview | Brad Hodge (BSC) interview

SCAC Quarterfinal Game Four Recap

Millsaps College got a game-high 23 points and 16 rebounds from Shante Morton and a SCAC tournament record 21 rebounds from Janice Okeke to break away in the second half for a 65-55 victory over Trinity University in the evening's final women's quarterfinal match-up at Homewood High School. Box Score

Neither team shot particularly well in the first half, and the two teams were tied 25-25 at the break.  The Tigers actually jumped out to an 18-7 lead to start the game, but Millsaps rallied with 11 unanswered points to tie it with 3:55 left until the half.  Trinity never trailed in the opening period, and two Millsaps free throws in the final minute evened the game for just the second time all night.

Millsaps took its first lead early in the second half, scoring two more free throws to go up 29-28.  The teams went back and forth over the next few minutes, and Trinity led 38-37 with 14:03 to play in the game.  That was the last lead the Tigers would see, though, as Millsaps pulled ahead for good on its next possession. 

In the final minutes, the Majors turned a three-point lead (54-51) into a 10-point margin with seven straight points, taking control of the game down the stretch.  The Tigers hit just 1-5 free throws and 2-10 from the field in the final 4:02 of the game.

Murphy Burns led Trinity with 22 points, hitting 8-20 from the field and 4-10 from three-point range.  She also picked up five rebounds in her 38 minutes of action.

The TU Tigers close out the season with an overall record of 9-17.

Tonight's win for the Majors marked the first in school history at the SCAC Tournament. Millsaps, now 21-5 will face the No. 1 seed in the West, the Southwestern Pirates in tomorrow's second semifinal contest.

Shante Morton (MC) interview | Chuck Winkelman (MC) interview | Marvin Walker (TU) interview