Despite already clinching a spot in the New Jersey Athletic Conference, the Rowan women’s basketball team still had one game left against William Paterson. A win would force a tiebreaker with Montclair State, while a loss would give the Profs the No. 2 seed.
Rowan was able to close out the regular season in dominant fashion, downing William Paterson 83-65.
“We came out strong. We wanted to finish 4-0 at the end, but 2-2, you can’t complain,” said grad student forward Melissa Lake, who tied a career-high in points with 16. “We finished, we won and now it comes down to a coin flip, but hopefully we win that.”
The unorthodox tiebreaker coin flip went in Montclair State’s favor, however, forcing Rowan to go into the conference tournament as the second seed.
After the first quarter Rowan was up 18-13, but a 14-2 Pioneer run to start the second quarter gave William Paterson a brief lead. The teams went into the half tied at 34.
The brown and gold went ahead and never looked back from that point, outscoring the Pioneers 28-17 and 21-14 in the third and fourth quarters, respectively, to seal the win.
“It was a typical NJAC battle. I thought both teams came out and played hard, both teams had something to gain in the game,” head coach Gabby Lisella said. “I think in the end we were able to open some things with our pressure, our shooting improved in the second half and I think that was probably the difference in the game.”
Rowan will face the winner of Saturday’s first-round matchup between Rutgers-Camden and Stockton on Tuesday, Feb. 23.
“We’re going to take care of business. One game at a time,” Lake said. “This is our season. We’re confident.”
PLAYER OF THE GAME
Graduate student forward Melissa Lake- 16 points (6-of-11 FG), 4 rebounds, 4 steals
vs. #3 Stockton/#6 Rutgers-Camden, Tuesday 7 pm
Stockton- L 85-53 (Jan. 20)
Camden- W 88-75 (Jan. 27)
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