Women’s hoop wins in tourney
HARTFORD, Conn. — The fifth-seeded Middlebury College women’s basketball team on Saturday defeated host No. 4 Trinity, 75-71, in a NESCAC quarterfinal to advance to the semifinal round for the first time in six years.
The 19-6 Panthers will face host No. 1 Bowdoin (25-0) at 2 p.m. on Saturday with a date in Sunday’s noon final at stake. The Polar Bears rallied to defeat the host Panthers, 62-58, on Feb. 1. No. 2 Amherst and No. 3 Tufts meet in the other semifinal. Sunday’s winner gets the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA Division III tournament. Even if it loses this weekend Middlebury could get an at-large bid when the field is announced on Monday.
Middlebury led for most of the game over the 19-6 Bantams and for all of the second half except for early in the third period, when Trinity nosed ahead, 41-40. Middlebury bounced back to lead by 53-49 entering the final quarter.
In the fourth quarter, an early Peace Kabari three-point play closed the gap to 53-52, but Middlebury got back-to-back buckets from Maya Davis and another from Colleen Caveney to make it 59-52. The Bantams closed to a point (66-65) with just over three minutes left to play, but Betsy Knox pushed the margin back to five with four straight points.
Middlebury then iced the win from the foul line, as Ivy Houde sank a pair and Knox made three in the closing seconds for the 75-71 final.
Davis led four Panthers in double figures, scoring 22 points to go along with eight rebounds. Caveney netted 17 points, Waldman added 16 points and a game-high seven assists, while Knox chipped in with 14. Alex Huffman collected a game-high 12 rebounds as the Panthers avenged a close regular-season loss at Trinity.
Kabari paced Trinity with 28 points, 11 boards and five assists, while Courtney Erickson scored 17 points.
Middlebury shot 43.1 percent from the floor and limited the Bantams to 34.8 percent shooting.
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