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Pace's double-double leads Senior Day win
Feb 19, 2013 4:00 pm
Lady Bulldogs clinch first conference crown since 1999
Jessica Pace scored a career-best 26 points and added 11 rebounds, leading fifth-ranked Cumberland to a 66-52 victory over the University of Rio Grande on Saturday at the Dallas Floyd Recreation Center.
With the win the Bulldogs clinched the Mid-South Conference regular-season championship, the program’s first conference title since 1998-99.
Pace finished 9-of-12 from the field and 8-of-14 at the foul line for her 26 points, besting by one her previous career high set against Midway on Nov. 6, 2010. It was her sixth double-double of the season and 18th of her career. Pace was one of 14 men’s and women’s players honored between games of the doubleheader during Senior Day activities.
London Elie added 10 points for the Bulldogs (25-2, 16-2 Mid-South), the only other player in double figures. A total of 11 CU players scored in the win, as the program reached the 25-win plateau for just the fourth time in school history and first time since 2007.
Morgan Daniels led the Redstorm (6-21, 0-17) with 18 points, including 10-for-12 at the foul line, while Shardai Morrison-Fountain added 10 points for the visitors. Rio Grande was 0-of-11 from 3-point range in the game but made 22-of-29 free throws.
The Bulldogs started the game quickly, racing out to a 15-4 advantage six minutes into the contest behind six points from Pace and four by Elie. TaCouya Allen capped the spurt with a trifecta, but the Bulldogs made only 3-for-20 from behind the arc in the contest.
Rio Grande closed to within seven points twice during the middle of the period before CU netted six straight points, including two free throws for Elie and field goals by Casie Cowan and Pace.
The Bulldogs led 33-22 at the half after limiting URG to just 28 percent shooting in the period. Pace posted 12 points and seven boards for Cumberland.
The home team put together a 21-10 run to begin the second half to take its biggest lead of the game at 54-32 with 10:03 remaining. The spurt included three consecutive old-fashioned three-point plays, one each by Pace, Elie and Josette Campbell. Pace netted 10 points during the stretch that was capped by a jumper from Yolanda Davis.
Rio Grande ended the game on a 14-6 spurt thanks to 10 free throws, including six by Daniels.
Cumberland will finish the regular season with a game Saturday at Bluefield and at home on Feb. 25 versus the University of the Cumberlands.
Bulldogs hang on for 66-60 Senior Night win
Cumberland's men went 5-of-6 from the free throw line in the final 30 seconds and used a balanced Bulldog scoring attack to defeat Rio Grande 66-60 for its fifth conference win Saturday night at the Dallas Floyd Recreation Center.
Cumberland’s four seniors each made big contributions, led by Creshaun Holt’s 11 points and nine rebounds. Elijah Gillis also scored 11 points to go along with four rebounds, Charles Stewart registered 10 points and four assists, while Jerret Towns scored eight points and reeled in a game-high nine rebounds.
The win thrust Cumberland (9-18, 4-13), back into the ninth spot in the Mid-South Conference, where 11 teams are vying for spots in the eight-team tournament. The Bulldogs currently sit two games behind UVA-Wise for the final position with two conference games remaining for CU against Bluefield College and the University of the Cumberlands.
With just under two minutes remaining in the contest, Holt connected on a bucket underneath the hoop on a shovel pass from Stewart to put the Bulldogs up 57-49 and seemingly in control of the game. But Rio Grande’s Jermaine Warmack was fouled on a 3-point attempt and knocked down every free throw to pull the RedStorm to within five with 1:39 to go.
The Bulldogs held a five-point lead with 1:34 left in the game and control of the ball, but Rio Grande’s full court pressure forced a turnover in CU’s backcourt which led to a layup by Warmack to cut the lead to three.
A missed layup by Brian Blackmon was grabbed by Gillis who scored to put the Bulldogs up 61-56 with 42 ticks remaining before the RedStorm’s Dominick Haynes converted a layup to make it a one-possession ballgame. Rio Grandewas then forced to foul, and two free throws by Daniel McFadden and Gillis and one from Lester Gude iced the win for Cumberland.
In the first half, neither team led by more than five points until a 3-pointer by Gillis put CU up 22-16 with 8:12 to play. A jumper by URG’s Evan Legg and a 3-pointer by Warmack quickly shred the Bulldog lead to one. With 2:13 left in the half, McFadden drained a 3-pointer and converted a layup off a behind-the-back pass from Stewart to again push the lead to six, but a RedStorm 3-pointer by D.D. Joiner with two seconds before the buzzer pulledRio Grandeto within 32-29.
In the second half, URG was able to pull within three points on a layup by Bruce Komakech with just under nine minutes to go, but a 13-5 Bulldog run propelled CU to a 55-44 lead with four minutes left to play.
Blackmon also shared team-high scoring honors with 11 points, and Gude and McFadden chipped in with 8 and 7, respectively.
For Rio Grande (9-18, 5-13), Warmack had a game-high 20 points.
Cumberland will travel to Bluefield on Saturday, the Bulldogs' last trip road trip of the season, for a 3 p.m. CT game.