Nov. 15, 2008
TAMPA - Loyola's Kaitlin Grant scored a career-high 21 points, and the Greyhounds beat Harvard, 78-69, in the first game of the University of South Florida Shootout on Saturday afternoon at the Sun Dome.
Grant was 7-of-8 from the free throw line and made seven of her 13 field goal attempts. She scored 13 points in the first half and also finished with seven rebounds, two assists and two steals.
"Kaitlin did a good job of taking what she was given today," Loyola Head Coach Joe Logan said. "We got the ball to her in some good situations, and she was able to take advantage of them."
Loyola will meet the winner of the Shootout's second game - between the host Bulls and Central Connecticut State - in the Championship Game on Sunday at 2 p.m.
After taking a 15-point lead early in the second half, the Greyhounds (1-0 overall) had two 14-point advantages, the final coming at 12:13 when Meredith Tolley took a Candice Walker pass a hit a 3-pointer from the right side to go up 60-46.
Harvard, however, answered with a three from Niki Finelli a minute later, and the Crimson (0-1) continued to trim Loyola's lead.
Katie Rollins made a turn-around layup with 4:42 to go, and Emily Tay hit 1-of-2 free throws at the 4:20 mark, pulling Harvard within four, 69-65.
After Loyola missed two shots on its next possessions, Tay made a twisting jumper with three minutes even left on the clock, pulling Harvard within two, 69-67.
With the shot clock winding down, Siobhan Prior missed a 3-pointer, and Rollins grabbed the rebound for Harvard.
On the defensive end, Grant was whistled for her fourth personal foul with 2:16 to play, sending Rollins to the line to shot two.
After making her first five, Rollins missed the back-end of the pair, and Tolley grabbed the rebound for Loyola. The first free throw, however, made it a one-point game, 69-68, the closest it had been since a Prior free throw tied the score at 14-14 with 10:39 to play.
The Greyhounds made good use of the shot clock on the ensuing possession, and Prior came off a screen at the top of the perimeter and pulled up from 15 feet, draining and jumper to put Loyola back up three, 71-68.
Loyola made a defensive stop, as Tay missed a jumper, and Mallory Lawes grabbed the rebound.
After running the shot clock to under 10 seconds, Lawes beat Harvard's Brogan Berry off the dribble. Lawes curled to the free throw line and slid a pass to a waiting Tolley on the left side.
Tolley made her second 3-pointer of the game to put Loyola up six with 1:01 left.
From there, Loyola held Harvard to only one free throw, and Grant and Prior each made pairs of shots from the charity stripe to seal the game.
"I was proud of the way that we competed today because they came back at us several times," Logan said. "Even though (Harvard) made a couple of runs, we did not allow that to get into our heads. We came back and secured the game."
In addition to Grant's 21, three other Greyhounds scored in double figures. Prior had 16, scoring all but one point in the second half. Tolley added 11, and Miriam McKenzie scored all 10 of her points during a five-minute stretch in the first half.
Loyola trailed 14-11 with 11:58 to play before halftime, making just four of its first 12 shots, but the Greyhounds went on a 26-12 run over the next 8:28, culminating with a Grant layup that put Loyola up, 37-23.
The Greyhounds shot 57.1-percent from the field in the first half and 48.3-percent (28-of-58) in the game. They held the Crimson to 36.2-percent from the field.
Tay led the Crimson with 16 points, while Rollins had 13.
Erica DiClemente played a team-high 38 minutes for Loyola, scoring nine points and leading the Greyhounds with eight rebounds.
Candice Walker logged a career-best seven assists in the win, while DiClemente and Prior each had three assists.