FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The Nova Southeastern women’s basketball team is San Antonio bound.
With Monday night’s 78-56 win over No. 3 seed Delta State, the Sharks (23-8) are South Region champions and will now move on to the national Elite Eight at the Bill Greehey Arena. They will face the winner of the West Region, the only bracket with a final game not decided on Monday. The top two seeds in the west, Western Washington and Simon Fraser, play Tuesday at 9 p.m. Eastern.
NSU started out cold, while Delta State made their first four shots and moved ahead early, 12-4. The Sharks then went on a 13-3 run to take their first lead, 17-15, at the 9:29 mark. The spurt was capped by a layup by Danielle Robinson (So., Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), who led the team with 20 points on the night.
Robinson also made the last points of the half, giving the Sharks an eight-point lead heading into the locker room. The lead was eight again when Meixandra Porter (Sr., Chantilly, Va.) made her first basket of the night, a 3-pointer early in the second half.
Delta State cut it to four (38-34) with two straight baskets, the latter by DSU’s leading scorer coming in, Seneca Walton, also her first field goal of the night. Immediately, Robinson buried her first “3” to push NSU back ahead by seven, and for the next four minutes, the Shark lead hovered in single digits.
It was still only a six-point game, 49-43, with 13:10 left. From then until the 2:54 mark, NSU outscored the Lady Statesmen 23-4, with seven points coming from Robinson and six from Porter. The Shark faithful rose to their feet, and as the final horn sounded, confetti rained down from the catwalk to cover the celebrating team.
Besides Robinson’s 20, Taylor Buie (Fr., Puyallup, Wash.) had 16 on 6-of-8 shooting, while Tailor Jones (Sr., Altamonte Springs, Fla.) also had 16 (6-of-9 from the field), along with team highs of eight rebounds and five assists.
The Sharks overcame Rhandi Ball’s region tourney-high 28 points, on 14-of-21 shooting, while Walton was held to four points and eight rebounds after recording double-doubles in both DSU wins leading up to the championship. The Lady Statesmen end their season at 21-10.
Walton and Ball from DSU, and the Sharks’ trio of Porter, Buie and Jones made up the South Region All-Tournament Team. Porter averaged 16 points in the three wins, Buie was at 15.7 (16, 15 and 16, respectively), and Jones was named Most Outstanding Player, at 13 points, 8.3 rebounds and 5.7 assists per game.
NSU and the winner of the West Region face off in San Antonio on Tuesday, March 26 at 7 p.m. Eastern.
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B. Keith Smith
Assistant Athletic Director
Communications and External Operations
Office: (954) 262-8261