Lady Pirates Win In Dramatic Fashion For Season's First Victory
Nov. 25, 2005
GREENSBORO, N.C. - The East Carolina women's basketball team captured its first victory of the season in dramatic fashion following a 71-68 overtime victory over Ohio University at the UNCG Airport Marriott Thanksgiving Tournament.
The Lady Pirates (1-1) were tied with the Bobcats at halftime and at the end of regulation, sending the game to an extra frame. Jumping out to a 68-63 lead in the first 2:20 of the overtime frame, the Lady Pirates used its tenacious defense and solid rebounding to close out the final 1:30 of the contest to earn the 71-68 victory. ECU outscored Ohio 8-5 in the overtime frame with freshman Impris Manning lead the way with three points, all on free throws.
With just under three minutes remaining in the second half, Cherie Mills picked up her fifth foul, giving way to senior Catherine Coley as the Lady Pirates inside presence. Coley responded with back-to-back baskets, cutting the Bobcat deficit to 63-61 before Jessica Slack knotted the game up with 26 seconds remaining. From there the Lady Pirates defense stepped up to close out regulation and move the game into overtime.
A tight game throughout, the two teams were tied on 16 occasions with the Bobcats (1-3) taking the largest lead of the game at six points early in the second half. It was there that Cherie Mills scored five straight points for East Carolina to close the gap to one. Mills led all Lady Pirate scorers with 21 points, five rebounds, two blocks, in 22 minutes of action. ECU would be forced to finish the game without Mills, after fouling out with 2:50 remaining in the contest.
"I am proud of the effort we gave," said ECU head coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener. "In the end of the game we were down, and were able to come back and push it to over time. We didn't shoot the ball extremely well from the free-throw line, we've got to get better than that, we've got to get better against the zone and shoot better from three-point range. I was proud that we had 22 offensive rebounds and only nine turnovers."
East Carolina now faces Longwood in the championship game of the UNCG Airport Marriott Thanksgiving Tournament at Fleming Coliseum on the campus of UNCG on Saturday, with a game time of 3 p.m.
East Carolina vs. Ohio
ECU is now 9-6 under Sharon Baldwin-Tener during in-season tournaments.
Head Coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener
On tough defense by the Lady Pirates: "We took care of the ball and our defense was able to come up with some big steals late in the game. We've got to get into the gym and shoot a little bit better, but it was good to get a win and move to 1-1 on the season."
On Cherie Mills performance: "Cherie makes a big difference for our team. She was able to score, more important she was perfect from the free-throw line, and she was able to rebound. She makes a lot of things happen and along with a couple of blocks and a steal, especially that she was only able to play 22 minutes. If we can get her to playing more minutes, and playing together, we have got such a young team that we need to be gelling together and figuring out where we need to distribute the ball."