Forester women drop Taylor in Crossroads opener

Pazia Speed.
Photo provided.

Allison Greene's three-pointer with 7:15 left in the game gave the Huntington University women's basketball team a lead it would not surrender and the Foresters held on to beat host Taylor University in the opening round of the Crossroads League Tournament on Tuesday, Feb. 19.

Greene's shot broke the ninth tie of the game and gave ffith-seeded HU, 18-12, a 55-52 lead. Taylor, the fourth seed, twice cut the margin to one point, but could never regain the advantage, and four free throws in the final 20 seconds sealed the win for Huntington.

Pazia Speed led Huntington with 20 points. Greene, the HU supersub, came off the bench to match Sarah Miller-Jennings with 15 points, and Foley added nine.

The win for HU was sweet revenge for a 26-point loss to Taylor, 21-10, recently in the regular season.

After Greene's big shot, Taylor's Becca Daniels, a Huntington County resident, hit a pair of free throws to cut the HU lead to 55-54. Jennings-Miller then made an old-fashioned three-point play to up the HU margin to four at 58-54 before the Trojans Ericka Redweik and Miller-Jennings swapped two free throws each. Erin Guarneri of Taylor hit a second chance hoop, but Lauren Meese hit a freebie and Greene hit a short shot to give HU a 63-58 lead with 4:04 left.

Redweik cut the margin back to one with a pair of two-pointers before Speed hit a shortie for a 65-62 lead with 1:37 left. Kelsey Bryant hit off an offensive rebound to draw Taylor within 64-64 with 33 seconds left, but Miller-Jennings nailed two free throws with 20 seconds left and Foley added the final two points with eight ticks left.

Redweik had 20 points to pace Taylor. Guarneri had 11 points to go with 10 rebounds, Tess Rudolph also had 11 points and Daniels had nine points.

The teams played to a 32-32 tie after the first half.

Foley led HU on the boards with eight rebounds, although Taylor had a 36-26 advantage in that department. Foley also tied Speed for the team lead in assists with four, and Meese was the chief pickpocket with five steals.

HU hit 23 of 55 shots from the field for 41.8 percent and 16 of 18 from the free-throw line for 88.9 percent. Taylor hit 26 of 59 from the field for 44.1 percent and added 9 of 9 from the stripe for 100 percent.

The Foresters will face top-seed Indiana Wesleyan on Friday.