Sat, Mar. 18, 2017
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BILLINGS, Mont. – Third-seeded Campbellsville (Ky.) completed its second-straight upset, beating top-seeded Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.), 73-70, to clinch a spot in the NAIA Women's Basketball Semifinals in Billings, Mont.
Emily Fox tallied a game-high 20 points in the contest for the Tigers (28-6), to go along with 16 points from Lexxus Graham off the bench. The final player for Campbellsville in double figures was Madison Stewart with 14 points.
The Lions (35-1) – who were unbeaten heading into the contest – had four players in double figures with Carrie Hatchel leading the way with 18 points. Kim Mallory and Tiffany Pate each recorded double-doubles for Freed-Hardeman with 14 points and 10 boards for Mallory and 13 and 10 for Pate, respectively.
The Tigers got off to a strong start and never looked back as the game was never tied and the Lions never had a lead throughout the contest.
Campbellsville scored the first 10 points of the game over the first 5:50 of play, before Freed-Hardeman got the board. However, the Lions came within one point, after going on a 9-0 run. The Tigers rebounded and took an 18-13 lead at the end of the first quarter.
In the second quarter, Campbellsville extended its lead to 15 points after going on 15-5 run over the first 6:55 of the quarter. With the Tigers leading, 33-18, Freed-Hardeman closed the first half on a 9-0 run to cut the Campbellsville lead to, 33-27, at the half.
The Tigers pushed its lead to 11 points twice in the early going of the third quarter, but another run from the Lions made it 42-39 with 4:47 left in the third quarter. After Freed-Hardeman pulled within two points, Campbellsville strung together five-straight points to take a 49-42 lead. The Tigers maintained a seven-point lead heading into the fourth quarter.
In a tightly contested fourth quarter, Campbellsville stretched its lead to 10 points, but the Lions chipped away at its deficit and pulled within four points. Freed-Hardeman then got as close as one point three times over the final two minutes of regulation.
In the final minute of play, the Tigers went 4-for-4 from the free throw line to secure a 73-70 victory. Campbellsville's defense also stood strong over the final minute as it held the Lions to just 2-for-8 from the floor over that span.
The Tigers finished the game shooting 48.9 percent from the floor and making 9-of-16 three pointers in the game. Freed-Hardeman shot 38.7 percent overall and were 5-for-22 from beyond the arc.
Campbellsville now moves into the NAIA Women's Basketball National Championship – Semifinals against Oklahoma City – who was the second seed in the Cramer Bracket.
Tipoff between the Tigers and Stars is slated for 8 p.m. ET on Monday night from Rimrock Auto Arena at MetraPark in Billings, Mont.