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Lady Danes down New Hampshire, will host Hartford for title game

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UAlbany Athletics
Lindsey Lowrie led the Great Danes with 18 points against No. 5 seed New Hampshire.

By Jake Byrne
Assistant Sports Editor
asp_sports@hotmail.com
 
The No. 1 seeded Albany Great Danes fended off No. 5 New Hampshire, 71-57, in the second semifinal game on Sunday, March 10 to reach the title game for the second-straight season. Albany will host the title game on Saturday, March 16, at SEFCU Arena against No. 2 seed Hartford at 7 p.m. on Fox Col­lege Sports and ESPN3.

The Great Danes won their 18th-straight game and 27th-straight against an America East opponent dating back to last season. They look to become the eighth team in league history to win back-to-back titles.

Four Great Danes scored in double figures, led by all-confer­ence third team selection Lindsey Lowrie, who had 18. Co-Player of the Year Ebone Henry added 13, while Julie Forster notched her 30th career double-double with 11 points and 12 rebounds.

New Hampshire was led by Kaylee Kilpatrick’s 17 points on 7-of-12 shooting. Cari Reed added 14 points, scoring 12 in the first half.

Albany won the game with defense and rebounding, forcing 20 Wildcat turnovers and turning those into 20 points while also grabbing 15 offensive rebounds.

The Wildcats shot 50 percent (12-of-24) in the first half and led by as many as four during the first 20 minutes thanks in large part to the efforts of Reed. The senior had 12 points on 5-of-8 shooting to go with three rebounds in the first half.

After Albany built a 14-8 lead, Reed, Morgan Frame and Kaylee Kilpatrick scored 16 of the next 22 points to give the Wildcats a 24-20 advantage.

The first-seeded Great Danes responded with 10-straight to re­claim a six-point lead, as Megan Craig and Julie Forster had four points apiece. Albany led 32-26 at halftime.

Albany finished the half with 10 offensive rebounds and five second-chance points, while also forcing 11 New Hampshire turnovers and converting those into 13 points.

The Great Danes started to pull away in the second half, build­ing a 12-point lead with three-straight basketball by Richards that made it 43-31 with 13:50 to play.

After Albany pushed the lead to as many as 13, the Wildcats came storming back with a 10-0 run that lasted from the 8:40 mark until 5:38 remaining that got New Hampshire within three at 52-49. Kilpatrick had five points during the run while Kelsey Ho­gan capped it with a 3-pointer.

Henry responded for the Great Danes with her first field goal of the game, hitting a driving layup to push the lead back to five. The Defensive Player of the Year scored 11 of her 13 points at the free throw line.

New Hampshire could not pull any closer in the contest, as Al­bany outscored the Wildcats 19-8 over the final 5:38 of the game.


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