WESTMINSTER, Md. – In a game that featured six ties and 16 lead changes, Washington (Md.) had the final say, scoring the final three points of a 71-69 Centennial Conference (CC) women's basketball victory over McDaniel on Thursday.
Steph Perez (Harrisburg, Pa./Central Dauphin East) tallied 19 points to lead the Green Terror (6-9, 3-8 CC) in the scoring column while adding seven rebounds. Codi McMaster (Spring Grove, Pa./Spring Grove) added 14 points and nine rebounds.
Latisha Pledger paced the Shorewomen (8-8, 6-5 CC) with 17 points and 20 rebounds – part of a 42-25 advantage on the glass. Ashley Espinosa netted a team-high 18 points.
Trailing 69-68 after Shelby Taylor (Huntingtown, Md./Huntingtown) hit the first of two free throws with 1:08 to play, Espinosa finished an eight-foot jump shot in the lane with 51.0 seconds on the clock to give her team the lead.
A jump ball gave possession back to Washington with 24.9 seconds on the clock before Pledger was fouled in the backcourt with 21.1 seconds to play.
She hit the first of her 1-and-1 attempt and Perez pulled down the board to give McDaniel possession.
After a timeout in the frontcourt with 16.1 seconds showing, the Green Terror missed a potential game-tying 19-footer but Perez forced another tie-up on the rebound to give her team possession under the basket with 1.6 seconds left.
Directly off the inbound into the lane, a potential game-tying shot fell just short and time expired.
Back-to-back 3-pointers from Kelly Mitchell and Jackie O'Connell staked the Shorewomen to an 8-3 lead with 16:12 to play in the first half.
An Emily Hubley layup-and-free throw extended the advantage to 13-4 just over two minutes later before McDaniel responded with an 8-0 run. Rachael Rybak (Reisterstown, Md./Franklin) capped the 3-minute, 58-second stretch with back-to-back jumpers, pulling the hosts within 13-12.
A Pledger layup and Mitchell 3-pointer stretched the lead back out to six a minute later before Rybak hit another jumper to spark a 12-2 run that spanned 3 minutes, 4 seconds and gave McDaniel a 24-20 lead with 4:46 to play.
The Green Terror took a 37-36 lead into the locker room before Carley Kendall hit a putback on the first possession of the second half.
Neither team led by more than three points until Washington reeled off six straight points to open up a 58-51 lead with 7:08 remaining.
Two Espinosa free throws kept it a seven-point game at 63-56 before McDaniel hit six straight free throws over a 1-minute, 2-second span to draw back within one with 3:59 to play.
McMaster snapped a nearly three-minute drought from the floor and stretch of eight straight points from the stripe with a jumper at the 3:21 mark.
Brittney Davis (Laurel, Md./St. Vincent Pallotti) foolowed with a layup of her own to knot the game at 66-all.
Two Perez free throws gave the hosts a 68-66 edge with 2:34 showing before Pledger tied the game for the final time, hitting a second-chance layup with 2:06 on the clock.
Rybak finished with 16 points. Davis added nine points, six assists and four steals.
McDaniel returns to action at Franklin & Marshall on Saturday. Game time is 1 p.m.