FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASESALISBURY, NC – Virginia Union and Shepherd each rallied in the final half to gain wins on the second day of action at the All Sport Classic Women’s Basketball Tournament on Saturday afternoon at Goodman Gym. Virginia Union (3-1) defeated host Catawba (2-3) 66-62, while Shepherd (2-4) topped Virginia State (1-4) 73-71.
Catawba and Virginia Union battled through six ties and 10 lead changes until VUU rallied over the final eight minutes. The Panthers led 33-32 at the break after tournament MVP Pria Stellmacher (Suitland, MD) hit a jumper at the buzzer.
The Lady Indians took control early in the second half, using a 6-0 run to grab a 51-44 lead with 12:32 left. Catawba held a 57-49 lead with eight minutes to play, but would score only three points the rest of the way. Stellmacher scored eight straight points to tie the game at 57-57 with 2:30 left.
Danyel Locklear (Pembroke, NC) regained the lead for Catawba at 59-57 with 2:11 remaining, but the Panthers got a free throw from Danielle Hoggard (Richmond, VA) and two more by Shanell Roberts (Miami, FL) to take a 60-59 lead with 1:24 left. Stellmacher would score the final six points, four coming at the line to help VUU to the win.
Stellmacher finished with 28 points to lead VUU. Hoggard joined her on the all-tournament team as did Catawba’s Ashley Cox (Richmond, VA) and Locklear. Locklear had 12 points and 13 rebounds. Aisha Stewart (Topeka, KS) led the lady Indians with 14 points, while Isiaette Darden (Wilson, NC) added 13.
In the opening game, Shepherd overcame 12-point second half deficit and defeated Virginia State 73-71. Gaynell Reese (Maple Heights, OH) hit a layup with 27 seconds remaining to break a 71-71 tie and lift the Lady Rams to the win. Monique Mason (Woodbridge, VA) misfired from 15 feet as time expired in an attempt to send the game to overtime.
Virginia State had erased a 10-point first half deficit and led 39-31 at the break. They outscored the Lady Rams 22-4 over a six-minute span late in the period. The Panthers held a 12-point lead early in the second half before foul trouble began to take its toll.
Virginia State’s Areyal Hall (Forestville, MD) picked up her fourth foul with 15:35 left and Erica Glasper (Richmond, VA) was saddled with her fourth at the 12:08 mark with the Panthers leading 54-42. Reese converted a three-point play at that point and Shepherd would get within 61-60 on a three-point play by Carrie Kunkel (Gettysburg, PA) with 58-57 with eight minutes remaining.
A jumper by Ashley von Norden (Hagerstown, MD) with 4:05 left tied the game at 64-64. Reese gave Shepherd a lead on a jumper at the 3:01 mark, but Hall answered with 2:43 to go and converted a free throw for a 67-66 Virginia State lead. Reese would again put the Lady Rams on top with a jumper at the 1:40 mark, but Mason converted two free throws for a 69-68 VSU lead. Cassie Murray (Cumberland, MD) connected on a three-pointer with 1:08 left to give the Lady Rams a 71-69 edge, then Alonna Marble (Capital Heights, MD) tied the game on a layup to set up Reese’s game-winner.
Murray led all scorers with 24 for Shepherd and added eight rebounds and five blocks. Reese had 19 points and eight boards, while von Norden collected 14 points and dished out five assists. Glasper led VSU with 22 points, while Marble had 19 points and six rebounds. Hall had 17 points and six boards.