Saturday, March 08, 2008

Davidson 49 Elon 68 (Women's)

Davidson's women's team takes the court for warmups here on this Saturday morning as they take on Elon in SoCon quarterfinal action. The Wildcats' last appearance was a 12-point victory over the College of Charleston at Senior night. The Cougars knocked off 4th seeded Georgia Southern this morning to advance to the semifinals against the juggernaut Chattanooga Mocs and Alex Anderson. The winner of Davidson-Elon will play Western Carolina tomorrow afternoon.

The Cougars held the Eagles to 23% shooting in the second half and kept all conference selection Tiffany Brown to 2-12 shooting.

Davidson owns two regular season victories over the Phoenix, the most recent coming as the Wildcats' penultimate game in Belk Arena. In that 68-54 victory, Alex Thompson recorded 18 points and six assists while Mercedes Robinson put up 17 points and 11 rebounds.

Heading into this game, Thompson owns an impressive streak of her own: 35 straight free throws. Stephen Curry hit 41 straight free throws earlier in the season.
5 minutes to tip
Robinson is honored before the game for being selected All Conference. Davidson's crowd is larger than every school's men's crowd from yesterday besides College of Charleston. On the way in, I saw several younger Davidson fans getting the tailgating going at 10 a.m. in the parking lot.
18:10 D 0 E 2
Elon gets the scoring going early with a post up and a layup. Paquette's first look went long and Katie Hamilton is already in. Elon with two early fouls away from the ball. Davidson's D has stiffened but the layups aren't falling (3 missed).
15:55 D 5 E 6
Paquette misses a wide open layup in transition and the Elon pep band pours on the taunts. Shots are beginning to fall for Elon and Davidson looks frustrated. Thompson breaks the slump with a huge three. Would like to see more of those today with Elon staying committed to clogging the paint.
15:00 D 5 E 9
Elon responds with a three of their own. Davidson has gotten two transition opportunities so far off of long defensive rebounds. Paquette converted on one and missed the other. SID Gavin McFarlin's scouting report listed Elon's troubles with the transition so we'll see if Davidson can continue to get easy opportunities.
13:46 D 8 E 9
Honna Housley douses a three and Davidson is beginning to stretch the Phoenix defense. Robinson has been long on several paint opportunities, but Davidson's defense is stout. They have forced at least four turnovers so far.
11:40 D 11 E 11
Housley with her second three and it looks like she is dialed in today. Robinson is still a little off, having thrown the ball away last time.

The Davidson pep band has about twenty members down here in their corner. They have new Cat in the Hat-type striped red and white collar shirts.
8:57 D 16 E 16
Kelsey Cary with a nice turnaround in the lane, but Elon gets an offensive rebound that was loose for forever and they convert on a three that they never should have had. Housley again for three. She's got nine.
7:14 D 16 E 19
And the missed layups continue for Davidson. Elon is getting a little more physical so I could conceive of a foul every once in a while, but none are coming. Hemerka and Robinson are still scoreless right now. Elon seems locked in on Davidson's passing and are getting fingertips on every other pass. Housley picked up her second foul so her three-point shooting is sitting on the bench.
5:19 D 16 E 21
Thompson is so busy trying to swing the ball around that she's pretty much taken herself out of any and every opportunity to score. Hamilton comes in for two straight turnovers and Elon penetrates for another layup. Watts with a 30-second timeout. Thompson and Robinson need to be the scorers right now.
3:59 D 20 E 21
Housley back in the lineup for a quick steal and score. She's got 11 while no other Wildcat has more than 3.

And the Wildcat is going nuts on the cowbell.
1:00 D 22 E 23
The Wildcats continue to lose the ball on offense and Robinson is still scoreless. The Wildcats are outhustling for rebounds but they cant....Mercedes Robinson for two! Big basket for her.
Halftime D 22 E 25
Tough half for the Wildcats offensively. Robinson didn't get on the board until the very end and Thompson only hit one shot. We'll see if Housley can continue her hot streak, and if Davidson can create a few more transition opportunities.
18:35 D 25 E 27
Alex Thompson attempted one shot in the first half. She has already attempted one shot in the second half and now has six points. She's second in scoring right now behind Housley. Keep shooting Thompson.
16:17 D 25 E 33
The Wildcats need to get Mercedes into a rhythm on the inside because Elon keeps getting on the verge of running away. Robinson continues to get banged around but the fouls are not coming. These rims are really tight. I hope that doesn't affect the men's team in an hour and a half.
15:06 D 29 E 33
Housley with a nice jumper and then AT gets a steal and finds Robinson on the fast break. The Cats defense is intense but they are getting called for touch fouls away from the basket, breaking up their intensity. Housley with 13 points.
13:50 D 33 E 34
Kelly Gassie gets on the scoreboard with an impressive drive and reverse layup...Robinson follows it up with a layup in the post and this looks like Wildcat basketball.
11:34 D 35 E 38
Davidson's rebounding is impressive when you realize that Elon has an average size advantage at every position. But Elon won't away. Tierra Bumbrey has 10 points for the Phoenix, and she is penetrating off the dribble and getting the ball to her taller teammates. This one will go down to the wire.
9:25 D 37 E 47
Elon hitting shots and Davidson frustrated with Alex Thompson on the bench. This one is getting away. Quick. The Wildcats need to get it together right now.
7:03 D 39 E 51
That size is the difference right now as Elon gets several big jump ball rebounds on the offensive glass. Kelly Gassie trying to take over off the dribble but throws the ball away when doubled up. Thompson hasn't even looked at the basket in fifteen minutes. Davidson's defense is falling apart as well.
5:00 D 42 E 56
Davidson has moved to a full court press but Tiffany Davis nails a dagger three-pointer. Another Elon layup...
1:51 D 44 E 61
And Elon is now throwing up three-pointers at the shot clock buzzer and banking them in. This is sad for the sections full of Wildcat faithful pouring in. It's been a really tough year for these Cats with all of the injuries and this is a tough way to end the careers of Danielle Hemerka, Honna Housley, and Katie Hamilton.

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