The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Sports

March 19, 2013

Crowder wins in opening round of national tournament

SALINA, Kan. — Crowder College coach Tina Robbins had a short message for her Lady ’Riders at halftime on Monday night.

RELAX!

It must have worked. Neosho-based Crowder, tied with Redlands (Okla.) at the half, shot 63 percent from the field in the second half in ousting the Cougars 69-64 in the first round of the NJCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship.

Crowder, seeded 15th, improved to 29-5 and will face second-seeded Central Arizona (29-1) at 1 p.m. Wednesday in the Bicentennial Center in the 24-team field.

Redlands, seeded 18th, finished 21-10 in its first trip to the Division I nationals.

Crowder sank 17 of 27 shots from the floor in the second half after a 32.3 percent effort in the first half.

“We just needed to relax,” Robbins said. “We were nervous for about the first 15 minutes. Part of it is understandable but not for that many minutes.

“We made a few shots in the second half and regained our confidence,” Robbins said. “We missed some easy shots in the first half. We made them in the second.

“We continued to play well on defense in the second half and picked up several points in transition,” Robbins said.

Three players scored in double figures for Crowder. Terai Sadler led with 21 and Veronica Amos and Caprese Marshall each had 14.

Amos’ 11 and Sadler’s nine boosted Crowder ahead 42-35 in rebounds.

Camila Lacerda dished out eight assists. Dorian Briggs and Sadler had three steals apiece and Amos and Megan Ritter each had a pair.

Crowder, although 0-for-6 in treys, outshot Redlands overall 46.6 percent to 37.3.

Kayla Pahcoddy scored 25 points to pace Redlands of El Reno. Arielle Cooper added 19.

Today, Robbins said, the team will practice at a nearby high school and watch a couple of tourney games.

Robbins, of course, likely will be watching more film on Central Arizona.

“Absolutely, it will be a tough game,” she said. “I haven’t watched film. I don’t like looking ahead.”

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