COLUMBUS, Ga. – The Lady Cougars are advancing to the NCAA regional finals after beating Lander University 73-63. A fourth quarter surge and leadership by seniors like Gabby Williams is what made the difference out on the court.
Below is the official release from CSU Sports Information
Lady Cougars Outlast Lander in NCAA Tournament
March 11, 2017 (Saturday)
COLUMBUS – Down one entering the fourth quarter, the fourth-ranked and top-seeded Columbus State University women’s basketball team took down fifth-seeded Lander 73-63 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Saturday night. The game was played inside the Lumpkin Center.
Ashley Asouzu led the Lady Cougars with 19 points and a season-best 18 rebounds. Alexis Carter added a double-double as well with 16 points and 11 boards. Gabby Williams was 7-of-10 from the floor and scored 15 points.
The victory sends Columbus State (30-1) to the regional final for just the third time in program history and the first time since 2001. The Lady Cougars will take on third-seeded and 13th-ranked Lincoln Memorial on Monday night. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.
“This was a battle,” head coach Anita Howard said. “Lander is such a great team and they gave us everything we could handle.
“We made so many plays tonight that won’t show up on the scoreboard and I’m so blessed to have a group of young ladies that leaves it all on the court.”
After a slow first three minutes, a three-point play from Carter put the Lady Cougars in front and seven straight from Williams allowed CSU to double up Lander 14-7 with just under three minutes remaining in the opening quarter.
Lander (25-8) responded though, scoring the final seven points of the quarter and knotting the game at 14 after one.
Columbus State held just two leads in the second quarter as the Bearcats made their push. Erin Morrow’s 3-pointer at the 8:17 mark sent CSU back into the lead, but it would be the last time they were in front until the second half.
The Bearcats lead never grew larger than four throughout the quarter and Asouzu connected on a turnaround as the final seconds ticked away to send the game to halftime tied at 27.
The lead changed hands seven times in the third quarter, the final time on a Lander layup that gave the Bearcats a 46-45 edge heading to the fourth.
After four more lead changes, Lander held a 55-54 advantage with six minutes to play. From there, Columbus State flipped the switch and took over the game.
Keyrra Gillespie connected on a runner to put the Lady Cougars up and Asouzu and Carter then alternated baskets on four straight possessions. The 11-0 CSU run opened up a 10-point lead with just over one minute remaining and free throws iced the game from there.
Columbus State finished the evening at 39.7 percent (27-for-68) from the field after a 10-for-15 effort in the fourth quarter. The Lady Cougars controlled the glass, outrebounding Lander 56-28.
Lander shot 39.6 percent (21-for-53) as a team and was just 4-for-18 from outside.