Lynchburg Valiant Effort Not Enough as Eastern Mennonite Wins in OT, 84-77

For immediate release – 2/23/2013 - #261

Lynchburg Valiant Effort Not Enough as Eastern Mennonite Wins in OT, 84-77

SALEM, VA – The Lynchburg College women's basketball team put on one of the best performances of the season, but #1-seeded Eastern Mennonite was too much as the Hornets fell in overtime 84-77 Saturday in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Semifinals.

The Hornets trailed 35-31 heading into halftime and a four point Eastern Mennonite run spotted the Royals an eight point lead. Lynchburg freshman Chaney Forbush came down the court on the next possession, made a contested layup, and hit the subsequent free throw.

Eastern Mennonite pulled away one more time, taking a 61-49 lead with 8:35 remaining, before Lynchburg made a final surge. The Hornets whittled away at the Royal margin the rest of the way courtesy of a 20-8 spurt.

Sophomore Shannon Allan started the run with a layup for two of her 17 points. A couple of free throws by freshman Sarah Toliver, another Allan layup, and a traditional three-point play by sophomore Lauren Penley cut the EMU lead to six points, 64-58.

Allan's jump shot a minute later narrowed the deficit to four points, 64-60. The Royals attempted to hang on, scoring just enough to maintain a lead.

Following a free throw by Eastern Mennonite's Raiven Patterson to extend the Royal lead to three, 67-64, Allan knocked down another jumper, this time with 2:24 remaining. Patterson answered with a shot of her own less than 20 seconds later to extend the lead back to three.

Lynchburg's lone senior Shea Kelley knocked down a game-tying three with 1:33 remaining. It was the first tie of the second half and first since it was 21-all in the first.

The Hornet defense forced the Royals into three missed shots in the end of regulation to force the extra session.

Sophomore Katie Reeves hit an early three in overtime to take a 72-69 lead, but an 8-2 EMU run ran down the clock and the game.

Lynchburg (18-10) was led by a team-high 20 points from Penley to go with a game-high nine boards. Forbush and Reeves rounded out the Hornets in double-figures with 13 and 10 respectively.

Eastern Mennonite (21-5) was led by Keyla Baltimore's 23 points and six rebounds. Patterson added 18 points and seven boards, while Steph Rheinheimer and Shakeerah Sykes had 16 and 10 points each.

This was the first appearance in the semifinals for Lynchburg since the 1989-90 season.