Immediate Release: December 5, 2003
Contact: David O'Brian (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Bearcats rally from late 15-point deficit to defeat Montana State
TEMPE, Ariz.--Sophomore guard Rachel Laws (Wyncote, Pa.) scored a career-high 18 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, leading Binghamton (4-1) to a 59-55 upset over previously undefeated Montana State (4-1) in the first round of the Arizona State Wells Fargo Holiday Classic on Friday night. The Bearcats move on to face the host Sun Devils on Saturday at 8:30 p.m.
The Bearcats were down by as many as 15 points midway through the second half, but stormed back to record their second consecutive come-from-behind win in the final minute. Binghamton now has won four consecutive games.
"This was another great clutch performance for our team against a very good opponent," head coach Rich Conover said. "We didn't play our best game tonight but we kept our composure and made the shots we needed to down the stretch."
"We were calm, even when we were down by a lot," Laws said. "We never panicked and never lost our fight."
Things looked bleak for the Bearcats as the Bobcats went up 46-31 with 10:59 remaining. With 7:30 left, Binghamton was still down 50-36. It was then, however, that the Bearcats went on a 16-4 run in the ensuing 6:42 to pull to within 54-52 with just 48 seconds remaining.
Laws tied the game with a layup with 15 seconds left. Montana State, however, got to the three throw line and made the first of two attempts to go up 55-54 with 12 seconds to go. The Bearcats then got the break they needed when the Bobcats missed the second free throw. Senior guard Kate Townley (St. Paul, Minn.) then went the length of the floor and fired home the go-ahead basket with six seconds to go.
Montana State turned the ball over on a double-dribble on the ensuing inbounds pass and sophomore guard Jen Blues (Overland Park, Kan.) made the first of two free throws to make the score 57-55 with three seconds remaining. Although she missed the second shot, Blues got the ball back, was fouled again and made her next two free throws to ice the game with one second remaining.
Laws' 18-point effort was a career-high and marked the second time this season that she has recorded a double-double. Senior forward Leala Wegwerth (Maplewood, Minn.) added 12 points and was 6-for-6 from the free throw line. Townley finished with four points, six rebounds, five assists and three steals.
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