SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 24, 2007
Women's basketball falls to Winthrop, 50-49, in Lady Pirate Invitational Final

Nov. 24, 2007

Box Score

GREENVILLE, N.C. - Senior forward Ashley Williams tallied a game-high 18 points but the JU women's basketball team lost the battle of opposing styles to Winthrop, 50-49, Saturday evening in the championship game of the Lady Pirate Invitational at Minges Coliseum.

JU (4-2) won the turnover battle (20-10), tallied a game-high 11 steals and scored 13 fast break points but shot only .333 (20-60) from the field, including .176 (3-17) from beyond the arc.

Winthrop (5-2), which is off its best start since 1989-90, held a 45-34 rebounding advantage while shooting .404 (21-52) from the floor.

"We did a good job of capitalizing on opportunities in the first half but our shots didn't fall for us in the second," said JU head coach Jill Dunn. "Winthrop is a veteran team and they made more plays at the end of the game."

Trailing 46-42 with 4:26 remaining, Winthrop held the Dolphins scoreless for four minutes as the Lady Eagles used an 8-0 run to lead 50-46 after a pair of free throws by Yvonne Van Daalen with 21 seconds left.

Junior guard Regina Omoite nailed a three pointer to cut the deficit to 50-49 with 14 seconds remaining and Ashley Fann missed the first of a one-and-one opportunity at the line to give JU one last chance. After a timeout, junior guard Virginia Gregoire drove to the basket and threw up an errant shot after being bumped but no foul was called, ending the contest.

Williams was named to the all-tournament team after connecting on 9-of-13 shots to go with five rebounds, three blocks and five steals. With her steal effort, she moved past Kat Sungy (115) for first on the all-time steals list.

Gregoire, who also was named to the all-tournament team, finished with 12 points, five rebounds and two steals. Omoite added seven points and five assists.

Tiffany Rodd, who was named tournament MVP, led the Eagles with 15 points. Fann finished with 11 points and three steals. Ashley Haugtvedt tallied 10 points and a game-high 12 rebounds while Frachesca Davenport rounded out the Winthrop scoring with 10 points.

In the first half, Winthrop jumped out to an early 5-0 lead after consecutive baskets by Rodd, the last being a jump shot at the 17:31 mark. JU would answer with a 7-0 run, capped by a jumper by Hamilton, to take a 7-5 advantage with 14:58 left. The Dolphins increased their lead to 11-8 with a jumper by Williams (11:22) but the Lady Eagles answered with a 4-0 run to lead 12-11 after a basket by Davenport (9:50). Both teams would trade the lead until a three pointer by Rodd gave Winthrop a 17-15 advantage at the 7:29 mark.

In the second half, JU pushed its lead to a game-high nine points (34-25) after a jumper by Williams at the 17:34 mark but the Eagles slowly began to chip away at the deficit as the half progressed. Winthrop eventually tied the contest, 46-46, after a jumper by Davenport with 1:32 remaining and then took their first lead of the second half (48-46) on a layup by Haugtvedt with 48 seconds left.

The Dolphins took the lead for good in the half (21-19) after a jumper by Williams with 5:39 left and then increased the lead to as many as seven points (28-21) after a layup by Gregoire with 2:28 left. A jumper by Fann with 1:13 left would make it a 28-23 lead for the Dolphins at the break.

The Dolphins will play their first contest in the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena as JU hosts Florida on Wednesday at 5 p.m. The contest can be seen live on www.judolphins.com as part of ASun.TV.