Feb 27, 2013
Charlotte, N.C. — In a game of scoring runs, the No. 16 Shaw University Lady Bears overcame a late deficit to knock off Winston-Salem State 62-55 in the quarterfinals of the CIAA Tournament on Wednesday night at Time Warner Cable Arena.
The Lady Bears trailed 52-51 with 3:46 remaining before closing the game on an 11-3 run to pull away. Shaw regained the lead for good when junior Crystal Harris buried a falling jumper to give them a 53-52 lead, sparking the late run.
“It was a great ballgame,” said Shaw head coach Jacques Curtis. “It was the type of ballgame that we, as a coaching staff and as a team, anticipated. They run their sets real well and are well coached. We knew what kind of ballgame it was going to be. We just feel blessed to come out with a ‘W’.”
The Lady Bears, who avenged an eight-point loss to the Lady Rams on February 13, were led by Taylor Dalrymple, who finished with a game-high 21 points and eight rebounds. She was the only Lady Bear in double figures. Harris chimed in with nine points and 10 rebounds. Isayra Diaz finished with seven points for the Lady Bears.
Shaw, the No. 2 seed in the South, improves to 23-4 on the season and will battle Elizabeth City State, the No. 1 seed from the North, in the semifinals on Friday afternoon at 3 p.m. Winston-Salem State, the No. 3 seed from the South, ends its season with a 15-13 overall record.
Earlier in the season, Elizabeth City State handed the Lady Bears an early conference loss when they won 96-86 on January 3.
“They’ve got a great year going,” said Curtis about the Lady Vikings, who defeated Saint Augustine’s 74-68 in the quarterfinal round on Wednesday. “They put up 96 points on us the first time we played, so we are going to have to play some defense. It’s not about revenge, it’s about advancing. We just want to advance.”
Fayetteville State, the top seed from the South, defeated Lincoln (Pa.) 60-46 to move on the semifinals to face Virginia Union, who downed Virginia State 57-55 in the quarterfinals. Virginia Union is the No. 2 seed from the Northern Division.
“It’s probably the first time in a long time that all the top teams have advanced,” said Curtis. “The semifinals should be two good ballgames on Friday.”
Winston-Salem State was led by Dionna Scott with 17 points and five boards. Jonovah Graham added eight points while Schatavia Gray and Taylar Wells each contributed seven in the loss.
Shaw out-rebounded Winston-Salem State 45-35 with 20 coming on the offensive glass for both teams. The Lady Bears were 22-of-33 for a 66.7 percent rate compared to the Lady Rams, who were just 8-of-13 for 61.5 percent.
The first half started back and forth with both teams trading buckets for the first few four minutes. The Lady Rams took a 10-8 lead when Tareka Cesar hit a three-pointer. Forty-seconds later, Wells buried a three-pointer to push Winston-Salem State to a five-point edge.
The Lady Bears answered with a 9-0 spurt over the next three minutes to build a four-point lead. A three-pointer by Kearah Jeffreys from the right wing gave the Lady Bears a 17-13 lead with 11:50 remaining in the period.
The Lady Rams retaliated with an 8-0 run to build a 21-17 lead after Scott’s jumper with 8:03 remaining.
Winston-Salem State extended its lead to 24-20 when Scott sank a free throw with 4:50 left in the period. Shaw’s Diamond Mitchell cut her team’s deficit to one when she sank a three-pointer with 3:57 remaining.
Mitchell’s trey triggered a late 8-2 run for the Lady Bears, who held a 28-26 lead at halftime.
The Lady Bears opened the second half on a 13-8 run to build a 41-34 lead after another three-pointer from Jeffreys with 12:51 left to play.
The Lady Rams responded with a 7-0 run in a two-minute span to tie things up at 41 after a pair of free throws from Scott. During the run, Scott scored five of the WSSU’s seven points.
Mitchell hit a falling jumper that rolled around the rim before falling in to give the Lady Bears the lead back at the 10:27 mark.
The Lady Rams answered with an 8-1 run to take a 49-44 lead with 7:43 remaining after a jumper from Somalia McKenney sank through the net.
Shaw responded with a 7-0 run to build a 51-49 lead. After a three-pointer by Diaz and a layup from Harris tied the game at 49, Crystal Wilson broke free for a layup to give the Lady Bears the two-point edge with 5:26 left in the contest.
Two minutes later, Gray converted a three-point play after getting fouled while hitting a layup to give the Lady Rams a 52-51 lead.
The Lady Bears regained the lead for good when Harris made the go-ahead jumper with 3:29 remaining. They gained a three-point lead when Harris buried 1-of-2 free throws at the 2:33 mark to make it 54-52.
Harris sank a pair of free throws to put Shaw up by four with 1:51 remaining in the contest.
Winston-Salem State’s Chaylia Coleman sank 1-of-2 free throws to bring the Lady Rams within three with 1:21 left in the contest. On the other end, Dalrymple’s rebound and put-back gave the Lady Bears a 58-53 cushion with 55 ticks on the clock.
Dalrymple buried two free throws with 38.2 seconds left to push Shaw’s lead back to seven at 60-53. Wells hit a falling jumper to bring the Lady Rams within five with 26.2 ticks left.
Wilson sank two free throws with 24.2 seconds left to put the game out of reach as Shaw took a 62-55 lead.
Following a missed three-pointer by Keyrra Gillespie, Dalrymple came down with the rebound as the Lady Bears dribbled out the clock and moved on to the semifinals.
The Lady Bears are looking to get to their third straight CIAA Championship after winning the tournament the last two years. With the top seeds advancing to the semifinals and with Shaw only having two players from last year’s winning team on its active roster, it could make it tough for the Lady Bears to get the three-peat.
“It’s going to be tough because we have a brand new team,” said Curtis. “Other than Izzy (Diaz) and Crystal (Harris), the entire team is new. So the whole tournament experience is a new experience for them. They know they want to three-peat but it’s about getting their teammates to understand. We got a good taste of what the tournament is like with today’s game. The big challenge for us is on Friday. If we can win on Friday, I feel like we’ll have a really good chance to three-peat.”