COLUMBUS, Ohio – Marist’s Brittini Lai drilled a jumper with one second left in regulation to push the Red Foxes and Lady Monarchs to overtime, where the Old Dominion University women’s basketball team would eventually fall, 87-82. In a game that saw seven ties and seven lead changes, both teams lit it up from the floor on Sunday afternoon, as Marist shot a sizzling 62% (44% 3PT) and ODU a blistering 51% (48% 3PT). This was the third game in as many days for both squads, as part of the first ever James Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame Women’s Challenge at the Value City Arena.
Marist’s Emma O’Connor went off for career-highs in points (28) and rebounds (11), shooting a near perfect 8-9 FG, 3-4 3PT and 9-10 FT. Also in double figures for the Red Foxes was Leanne Ockenden (24 points on 9-15 FG) and Lai finished with 11 points. Both Marist and Old Dominion now possess 2-4 overall records.
ODU’s Shae Kelley scored 21 points and grabbed 11 boards; senior Becca Allison followed in scoring with 15 (5-7 FG, 3-5 3PT). Off the bench, Allison also snatched three rebounds, dished out three assists and accumulated three steals. Tiffany Minor scored in double figures for the second straight game, netting 14 on Sunday. Stephanie Gardner scored nine points and distributed a career-high 7 assists.
The Lady Monarchs opened up the game on a 19-7 run, earning its largest lead of the game with 9:42 remaining in the first half. In a first half in which the Red Foxes never led, it was Sydney Coffey that drilled a three-pointer at the buzzer to give Marist a 32-31 advantage heading into the locker room.
With 13:15 left in the second half, the Red Foxes jumped out to a nine point advantage, which was their largest lead of the game before ODU fought back and nodded the score at 53 all with 9:28 showing on the clock. Marist responded with a 7-0 run of their own with just over seven minutes left in regulation.
Both teams would exchange the lead multiple times over the next four and half minutes of play highlighted by a deep three-pointer by Lady Monarch senior co-caption, Stephanie Gardner as the shot clock expired tying the ballgame at 68-68.
ODU’s Kelley would later hit 3-4 FT’s to give Old Dominion a 71-70 advantage with 29 seconds remaining. Marist’s Sydney Coffey would pick up Galaisha Goodhope’s fifth and disqualifying foul, but went 0-2 on her FT’s with 13.4 seconds left. Old Dominion’s Gardner was then fouled but she too missed both her free-throws, only to have teammate Kelley board her second miss. Kelley hit 1-2 from the charity stripe and gave ODU a two point (72-70) lead with only eight seconds remaining in regulation.
It was then that Marist’s Lai dribbled down the court, stopped and popped the game-tying shot with one second showing on the clock to push the Red Foxes and Lady Monarchs into overtime.
In overtime, Old Dominion would pull the score even at 76-76 on a made Gardner three, but Marist then went on an 8-0 run. ODU’s LaQuanda Youner and Becca Allison would each hit a three pointer to pull the Lady Monarchs within three points (85-82) but Marist’s Lai would go on to hit both of her free-throw attempts with five seconds remaining in OT to lift the Red Foxes over ODU in a thriller, 87-82.
For the game, the Red Foxes connected on 23 of their 29 free-throws (79.3%) and 8-9 in overtime, compared to Old Dominion going 10-22 (45.5%) from the charity stripe and 1-6 in OT.
Both teams shot the ball remarkably well from the floor in the first half; Marist shot 57% on their FGA and Old Dominion connected on 50% of their shots. Furthermore, the Red Foxes drilled 44% (4-9) from behind the arc, while the Lady Monarchs knocked down 40% (4-10) of their trey’s.
Next Up For the Lady Monarchs
The Lady Monarchs will be back in action Sunday, Dec. 1 at Boston University when they take on the Terriers at 12:15 p.m., as this will officially conclude the James Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame Women’s Challenge for Old Dominion.
Games played at MassMutual Center - Springfield, Massachusetts
Sunday December 1
10:00 AM Bowling Green vs. Monmouth
12:15 PM Boston University vs. Old Dominion
2:30 PM Marist College vs. St. Bonaventure University
5:30 PM University of Connecticut vs. Ohio State University
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