EDINBURG, Texas – (Feb. 15) Seattle University women’s basketball fell, 69-67 in overtime, at UTRGV Thursday night. Five Redhawks scored in double figures in the tense Western Athletic Conference (WAC) game at the UTRGV Fieldhouse.
“UTRGV played with energy,” said Coach Suzy Barcomb. “We didn’t execute down the stretch. McKenzi stepped up big for us tonight. She provided a spark that we needed.”
Seattle U (13-12, 7-3 WAC) led for much of the night, but the Vaqueros stayed close and took the lead in the fourth quarter. Kamira Sanders drove and scored with 24 seconds remaining in regulation, tying the game at 65. SU earned a defensive stop, as Jacinta Beckley pulled down a rebound and time expired.
In overtime, the hosts scored first, but McKenzi Williams quickly answered with a tying lay-in at the 3:56 mark. UTRGV (12-13, 2-8 WAC) hit a long two-pointer with 3:01 left, taking a 69-67 lead. SU was unable to even the score as the period wore on, but the Redhawks worked defensively, claiming several stops, including a shot-clock violation in the final minute of OT.
Kallin Spiller altered a shot with 13 seconds left, allowing Williams to grab the board and call timeout with 10.5 seconds showing on the clock. Madeline Dopplick’s three from straight on just missed and the buzzer sounded.
Sanders led with 13 points and five rebounds. Alexis Montgomery, Beckley, Dopplick, and Williams each scored 11 points. Williams took four charges on the night. Montgomery fouled out late in regulation, but not before putting up 11 points, nine rebounds, six assists and two blocks. Beckley notched nine boards, while Spiller contributed eight points, nine rebounds, and four assists.
In the first half, SU used stellar starts in each quarter to try to pull away from the hosts. UTRGV hung in with better finishes in each frame, though. Spiller finished a putback and then Sanders set up a Dopplick three-pointer. Beckley drained a trey for an 8-0 lead at the 7:29 mark, forcing a Vaquero timeout. The home side crawled back into the game, but Montgomery’s jumper and a pair of Sanders’ foul shots kept SU ahead. Beckley closed the period with a step back jumper for a 15-13 lead.
Spiller scored twice to begin the second and then Montgomery passed ahead to Dopplick on the break, where the junior finished through contact for a three-point play and a 22-17 advantage at the 7:33 mark. Spiller then found Williams for a layup and Montgomery lobbed to Joana Alves for a bucket and a 31-20 lead midway through the frame. Williams squirmed her way through the defense and scored again, as the margin went to 10. UTRGV got a bit closer, but a Montgomery jump shot wrapped first-half scoring, as the Redhawks entered halftime with a 37-30 difference.
Baskets by Beckley and Sanders stretched the margin to 41-30 early in the third. Sanders scored a pair of buckets and Montgomery connected on a jumper, but UTRGV rallied, tying the game at 47 with 1:55 left in the quarter. Williams sank two foul shots and then Beckley assisted on a Dopplick reverse layup in the final minute. A Williams free throw gave SU a 52-50 cushion after 30 minutes of action.
The Redhawks scored six quick points to open the fourth, as Montgomery, Beckley, and Spiller each converted to make it 58-50 with 8:00 to go. The hosts eventually tied it, however, and gained a 60-58 edge at the 4:57 mark. Two more Williams free throws tied it, but the Vaqueros grabbed a 65-60 lead with 2:34 remaining in the fourth. Sanders responded with a layup to trim the deficit and then the sophomore split two foul shots. Williams took a charge to thwart a UTRGV trip, but SU could not tie it. After another stop, Sanders scored to make it 65-all.
Seattle U heads to New Mexico State for its final regular season road game on Sunday, Feb. 18.