Belmont Abbey senior guard Kelsey Long sank two free throws with six seconds left, and Chowan's last second three-pointer hit the front of the rim as the Crusaders women's basketball team earned a 64-61 win this evening at the Wheeler Center. The win evens the Abbey's record to 2-2, while Chowan drops to 3-2.
The contest featured five ties and 20 lead changes as no lead was greater than seven points. The Hawks led 33-29 at the half but the Crusaders outscored Chowan 35-28 in the second half to win by three.
McKenzie Owen scored six of the Abbey's first eight points but the Abbey did not lead by any more than three points as the stanza featured five ties and 19 lead changes.
After Belmont Abbey moved ahead 25-24 on a Morgan Midkiff three-pointer with 4:36 left, Chowan closed the stanza on a 10-4 run to carry a 33-29 lead into halftime.
The second half was all Belmont Abbey, as the Crusaders stormed ahead for good on a 12-2 run through the first 5:37 to take a 41-35 advantage. The run was fueled by three three-pointers, coming from Midkiff, Caitlyn Ranson and Larissa Bishop.
A Chowan run midway through the half chopped the Abbey lead down to just one at 50-49 with 6:58 to go, but the Crusaders had a response, answering with an 8-2 run to extend the lead to 58-51 with 3:35 to play.
The Hawks refused to go away, as they scored eight of the game's next ten points to cut the lead to one at 60-59 with 1:55 left.
The two teams then traded baskets, the last of which coming from Chowan to close the gap to 62-61 with 51 ticks left, but the Hawks did not score again.
The Abbey missed a layup on its next trip down the floor, but Chowan turned the ball over with seven seconds left. With a foul to give, the Hawks immediately fouled on the inbounds pass. They did it again on the ensuing inbounds pass, this time fouling Long, who went to the line with six seconds left with a one-and-one. With a one point lead, Long swished home both free throws, the last of her eight points on the evening, to stretch the lead to 64-61.
With 94 feet to go, Chowan raced up the court and tried to set up a shot, and with one second left, Janelle Murphy's attempt from 20 feet hit the front of the rim and bounced away at the buzzer as the Abbey earned its second win of the season.
Owen led all scorers with 16 points, 12 in the first half, as she sank eight of 14 from the field. She also had six rebounds and two steals. Midkiff added 14 points, 11 in the second half, to go along with five assists. Belmont Abbey shot 48.2 percent (27-56) from the field as 19 of the 27 baskets were assisted, and the Crusaders converted five of ten from three-point range. Candace Fox totaled five assists and two steals. Melissa Foures's nine rebounds led all players.