SATURDAY, MARCH 04, 2006
Women's Basketball earns seventh seed with 75-70 win over Stetson
March 4, 2006
DeLAND, Fla. - - Sophomore forward Ashley Williams and freshman guard Virginia Gregoire combined for 42 points as each played a part in leading the JU women's basketball team to the seventh seed in the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament with a 75-70 win over Stetson, Saturday afternoon in the 2005-06 regular season finale at the Edmunds Center.
JU (10-17, 7-13) answered every lead change in the final two minutes as junior guard Jenarie Davis sealed the game with a pair of free throws with three seconds left. Stetson (9-18, 7-13) had its five-game home winning streak snapped.
"We did what we needed to do to get ourselves in the best possible position for the A-Sun Tournament," said JU head coach Jill Dunn. "We need to keep improving on the little things and carry our momentum over to next week."
Williams finished with 23 points (17 in the second half) after finishing 8-of-12 from the field and 7-of-8 from the line. She also finished with six rebounds and two steals in only 28 minutes. Gregoire scored a career-best 19 points (11 in the second half) to go along with eight rebounds, four assists and two steals. Senior guard Sheena Carpenter added 10 points and nine rebounds, while freshman guard Regina Omoite tallied eight points.
Nefertiti Walker led the Hatters with 20 points on 6-of-24 shooting from the floor, including a 4-of-12 effort from beyond the arc. Sharnesha Smith added 18 points and nine assists and Janene MacLin posted 13 points and a game-high 13 rebounds.
Leading 36-27 at the half, JU maintained its lead until the Lady Hatters made their first run of the contest (5-0) to cut the deficit to 41-38 at the 15:23 mark. Stetson made it 43-41 on a pair of free-throws by Kim Manning but Gregoire answered with five points to make it 48-41 with 12:49 left. Stetson cut the margin to 55-54 with a 14-6 run (9:54) but Williams answered with a layup to make it 57-54. After a pair of free throws by Shayna Swinson cut the lead to one, Stetson took their first lead (59-58) after a layup by Swinson with 8:43 remaining. JU answered with a 7-0 run to make it 64-58 (7:02) but the Hatters used a 9-4 run to recapture the lead, 68-67, on a three pointer by Walker with 2:02 left. Each team traded the lead on each possession until a pair of free throws by Williams gave the Dolphins a 73-70 advantage with 43 seconds remaining. Stetson could not connect on four attempts until Davis's free throws sealed the contest.
In the first half, JU took advantage of Stetson's sluggish play by jumping out to an early 13-6 lead at the 10:57 mark. The Lady Hatters cut the margin to 15-13 on a three-pointer by Walker but the Dolphins answered with a 13-5 run to make it 28-18 (5:27), despite Williams sitting on the bench with two early fouls. The Dolphins increased the lead to a period-high 14 points (32-18) on a layup by Ford but the Hatters ended the half on a 9-4 run to make it 36-27 at the break.
JU will compete in the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament for only the second time in program history next Thursday in Dothan, Ala. The Dolphins will face the loser of Belmont/Florida Atlantic (4:30 p.m.) at a time determined by the home seed.
2005-06 WOMEN'S BASKETBALL