Suns earn NCAA tourney berth

Although falling short in the Great American Conference Championship, the Golden Suns earned a berth to the NCAA Tournament and will face No. 2 seeded Emporia State at 2:30 p.m. Friday in Hays, Kan. Entering the Division II Central Region as the seventh-seed, Tech (23-6) punched its ticket to the tournament with an at-large bid.

A rematch against Harding University in the GAC title game fell in favor of the foe 68-50 on Sunday in Bartlesville, Okla. A 17-point effort by Fatima Adams was not enough to overcome the Lady Bisons, as Harding shot 25 free throws and fouled only nine times. Tech made 7-of-9 free throws and committed 21 fouls. Two of the three referees also officiated the game at Rhodes Field House earlier this season, in which Harding defeated Tech 74-61 in the Golden Suns’ first conference loss of the year.

Anissa Pounds and Danielle Frachisur both fouled out in the 18-point loss, which was a 27-24 Tech lead at the half.

Katrina Hayden’s 3-pointer started the game with a 3-0 Tech lead in the first half, which she later extended to a 11-4 lead with another 3-pointer with 14:52 remaining. A layup by Caroline Eubanks put Tech up 13-4 at the 13:30 mark.

Although Tech’s lead was cut to 20-19 by the 5:40 mark, the Golden Suns remained in control with an 3-pointer by Pounds to round out the half.

It took until the 17:42 mark for Harding to gain a 29-28 point lead over Tech in the second half. A free throw gave the Lady Bisons an eight-point advantage, but Tech cut their lead to 37-35 by 11:01 with a layup by Adams.

A 3-pointer by Fabiana Monte with 5:24 left kept Tech within reach at 48-45, but that was as close as the Golden Suns would get before time expired. Harding went on a 10-1 run to go ahead 58-46 by 2:57. Adams scored the final two Tech baskets with free throws at 1:24 remaining at 60-50.

The Golden Suns arrived to the title game by defeating Henderson State 98-84 in its opening round and Southeastern Oklahoma 68-62 in the semifinals.

In the 14-point win over the Lady Reddies, Adams led scoring with 35 points, followed by Jacinda Myers-Sanders with 18, Pounds with 17 and Hayden with 13.

In the narrow six-point win over the Savage Storm, Adams led scoring with 22 points. Hayden and Monte had 12 points each.

About Laura Bean 54 Articles
Laura Bean managed The Arka Tech during the 2014-2015 academic year. As of June 2015, she is the managing editor of a weekly in northern Arkansas.