BROOKLYN, N.Y. -
Chevannah Paalvast's (Auckland, New Zealand/Massey) driving lay-up with 3.6
seconds left gave the Monmouth University women's basketball team a dramatic,
come-from-behind 63-62 victory over LIU Brooklyn, Saturday afternoon at the
Wellness, Recreation and Athletic Center. Alysha Womack (Springfield,
Pa./Cardinal O'Hara) scored 16 of her game-high 18 points in the second half as
the Hawks (6-10, 3-2 NEC) turned a 15-point second-half deficit into the
victory. The Blackbirds fall to 3-13 (0-5 NEC) with loss.
"In the timeout, Coach told
me that the final shot would be on me to make it. It got me a little nervous,
but pumped. When I went down the lane and I was wide open, I was just like, 'please
make this,'" said Paalvast. She explained that her focus quickly shifted. "Get a stop," said Paalvast. "Don't let them
score in these last three seconds. As soon as the buzzer went off, it was the
Abigail Martin (Maplewood,
N.J./Columbia) matched her season high with 15 points to go along with eight
rebounds, while Paalvast also finished in double figures with 11 points.
Krystal Wells scored 18
points and added five steals for LIU, while Tamika Guz added 15 points. Kelly
Robinson dished out a game-high six assists.
A one-possession game turned
into a double-digit LIU lead when the Blackbirds went on a 9-0 run to extend to
23-11 lead at the 9:50 mark of the first half. Gabby Singer (Harrisburg,
Pa./Central Dauphin) snapped the run with a three-pointer at the 9:33 mark and three
quick Martin jumpers cut the deficit to four, 27-23, with 4:34 remaining in the
half. But the Blackbirds outscored Monmouth, 7-3, in the final minutes to give
LIU an eight-point edge, 34-26, at the halftime break.
Martin led the Hawks with six
points at the half, while Guz led the Blackbirds with nine points. LIU
outrebounded the Hawks, 32-12, in the opening stanza, and took a 13-4 edge in
LIU extended its lead to 15
points, 45-30, by the 13:48 mark of the second half, before Monmouth outscored
the Blackbirds, 18-2, over the next six and a half minutes to take its first
lead, 48-47, since 7-6 just over three minutes into the first half. Womack
scored nine points in the spurt, including the jumper that put the Hawks on
Seven lead changes later, the
Hawks' comeback bid appeared to be for naught, as Cleandra Roberts converted a
putback three-point play with 28 seconds remaining in regulation to put the
Blackbirds on top by four, 62-58. But just seconds later, Womack was fouled and
made 1-of-2 free throws to cut the deficit to three. MU then fouled Letava
Whippy, who missed the front end of a 1-and-1. Womack then got into the lane
and converted a lay-up with 16 seconds left to cut the deficit to one.
Monmouth again fouled, this
time sending Wells to the charity stripe, and like Whippy, Wells erred on the front
end. Paalvast grabbed the defensive rebound, sprinted across half court and the
Hawks called timeout. Head Coach Jenny Palmateer drew up an isolation play at
the top of the key for Paalvast, who beat her defender one-on-one and buried
the uncontested lay-up with 3.6 seconds left.
Out of timeouts, LIU
inbounded to Wells, whose desperation heave from 35 feet as time expired failed
to draw iron.
For the game, the Hawks
outshot the Blackbirds, 43.9 percent (25-57) to 37.9 percent (25-66) from the
floor and 45.5 percent (5-11) to 30.8 percent (4-13) from long range. LIU took
a 57.1 percent (8-14) to 44.4 percent (8-18) edge from the free-throw line and
outrebounded the Hawks, 53-29. MU turned 18 Blackbird turnovers into 27 points,
while LIU was limited to 11 points on 12 Monmouth turnovers. LIU took a 21-9
edge in second-chance points.
The Hawks continue Northeast
Conference play in Brooklyn Monday afternoon at St. Francis Brooklyn. Opening
tip from the Pope Physical Education Center is scheduled for 2 p.m.