Saturday, March 13, 2010

NCAA Women's 2nd Round: Gannon 80, Seton Hill 60

I thought this could have been a dangerous one for Gannon. First, you only have one day to prepare for a quality opponent who has some momentum. Second, the euphoria from the opening round you've anticipated all year is gone, so you really have to grind it out in this game. Remember the men's second round game last year, a 67-65 nailbiter vs. Alderson-Broaddus? Kyle Goldcamp's scrambling layup with 6 seconds left -- and former GU recruit Terrell Eargle's just-missed three pointer at the horn -- were the difference. If you don't recall that game, click here for details.

And before you can say, "California (Pa.), here they come!", #6 seed Millersville stunned the host #2 Vulcans tonight, 74-63. For an early scouting report on the Lady Marauders (is there such a thing as a "female outlaw or mercenary paid or sustained by looting"?), click here. Let's hope this Millersville/Gannon regional final is as exciting as the legendary men's tilt in 1987.

19 comments:

  1. Good call on the A-B connection. GU just beat the WVIAC tournament champ in the first round and they play another WVIAC team that beat a CIAA team the night before.

    SH made 14 threes last night. They could give GU fits if they do that again.

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  2. I think Seton Hill did the GU women a favor last night.

    Fayettville was the type of team GU hasn't seen much, if any, of. They had one tall inside player and another strong physical inside player, both fairly athletic and capable of scoring. As a team, they were athletic and somewhat deep. I've felt all along that an athletic team that could bang inside with tall physical players would be toughest for GU to go against.

    SH's team, on the other hand, relies more on scoring from the outside, and thus is a lot like the teams that GU is used to playing. Not saying it'll be easy, but, IMO, the potential problems that Fayettville would have presented for GU would've been a tougher challenge,

    When defending a team in basketball, the familiar is usually easier to deal with than the unfamiliar.

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  3. I'm clicking around right now looking for other scores, and this men's score almost made me fall off my chair AND jump for joy at the same time: #8 St. Joseph (IN) 72, #1 Ky. Wesleyan 70. I wish I could have been there!

    Other men's scores:
    #4 West Virginia State 89, #5 E. Stroudsburg 79
    #3 St. Augustine's 70, #6 Kutztown 54
    #2 West Liberty ,79 #7 Alderson-Broaddus 66
    Central Missouri 78, Missouri Western 59 -- remember the Mules?
    I didn't have a final for Fairmont State/IUP

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  4. Just went final ... #1 IUP 71, #8 Fairmont St. 67. IUP led by 13 in the first half but let the lead evaporate. Julian Sanders hit a three with 1:17 to go to put IUP up for good, 66-65. Whew!

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  5. Just a solid effort tonight. Five players in double figures, great balance. SHU is a very one-dimensional team. In fact, they made only FOUR two-point baskets. In just 17 attempts. Gannon beat them inside. Look at the points in the paint stat.

    Play of the game ... with about four minutes to go and up 15, Crocker holds the ball in the backcourt for about 15 seconds, then dribbles to the front-court to a double-stack formation. Eventually, Crocker penetrates under the basket then kicks the ball to Kleber in the right corner. Quick pass to Vargas at the right wing, then she swings it to Nolan at the left wing. Nolan buries a three and any faint hopes of a SHU comeback! Just good basketball.

    Okay, now, in the Be Careful What You Wish For category, let's not overlook Millersville. They are the best defensive team in the PSAC and those types of teams are built to win on the road. It could be a very ugly style of game. But I can't blame people for being happy that Cal isn't coming here. The thought of having to beat any team a fourth time, particularly the rough-and-tumble style that they play, seemed like a large mountain to climb.

    I'll show up on Monday.

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  6. "Zingers" for the gals of Gannon. They now hold the record for most wins in 1 season. 35
    The Knights knew they were in a fight as SH surprisingly got a little physical on the inside. I saw a toughness I haven't noticed before from the Knights as they didn't backdown and went toe to toe with SH. Another "Dja notice", the way the SH coached cried at every foul, travel etc that went against them. A bit too much...

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  7. Tonight's game reminded me of a lot of most of GU's PSAC games this year. The opponent looked to attack with an outside game, and had very little in the way of a consistent inside game. They also had no answer to stopping GU's inside game. When SH doubled down to stop the inside game, the GU shooters were wide open and converted.

    As I said before, an opponent with a familiar style was made to order for the Lady Knights, and they took advantage. Should be interesting to see if Millersville plays any differently.

    Funny, but a couple of us who sat together tonight were saying, everytime the crowd cheered when it was announced that Cal was trailing, the same thing golden89 said above, "Be careful what you wish for". California was familiar, and I think they played their best against GU last weekend and still lost. Although as fans, seeing a different team will be more interesting, I'd be willing to bet that Coach Wright would rather see a familiar foe as opposed to one they haven't yet played.

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  8. Just checking some stats ... Millersville forces an average of 28 turnovers per game. They forced a lot of TO's in both their NCAA games. They seem to commit their share as well.

    We're going to have our hands full. I assume that they press a lot. Heck, they may be a lot like Cal. MU doesn't make a lot of threes.

    I don't think that Cal played its best last week, either Crystal Andrews made a ton of threes, but Kayla Smith had only two points.

    I hope that we're not sitting there on Monday saying "Gee ... maybe it wouldn't have been so bad having Cal here."

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  9. Wow ... IUP's late victory against Fairmont averted a PSAC catastrophe ...

    East Stroudsburg and Kutztown lost and IUP has to hang on at home against a #8 seed. The PSAC didn't seem terribly strong this year.

    We forgot about Millersville's most recent visit to the Hammermill Center for an NCAA game. Two words: Leo Nadal. But the 1987 regional final was still the best Gannon game that I've ever seen.

    Hopefully the crowd can stay into the game as MU seems to be the type of team that can make a same into a slog and take the crowd out of it. It could easily be a 53-49 type of contest.

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  10. 89, spot on about the Eastern Regional final in '87. Gannon scored 10 straight late in the first half; never heard the Audi louder longer.

    As far as the TO/game "forced" by Millersville: could be a little misleading, as opponents may have unforced errors among that number; still impressive. More telling might be steals/gm. MU averages 15+ per contest.

    Without having seen them, safe to assume the Marauders are focused and ball-hawking on defense and deliberate on offense.

    Without GU having played them, one could assume that playing at home will be a big advantage. In the last 4 games, Gannon has drawn more than MU did the entire home portion of their schedule. Should be a great game, as you don't get to this point without being a quality team.

    If posters on here are doing the "maybe-we'd-be-better-off-with-Cal" stuff, think of what MU is thinking. Carful what you wish for, indeed.

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  11. Also, least points allowed does not necessarily equate to best defensive team, just as most scored doesn't mean best offensive team. We all know the numbers that count, and GU has more than anyone in the country. I really like the chances of Coach Wright's team Monday night. Based on previous two nights, no reason to believe the Audi will be nything but rocking!!!!

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  12. As far MU or Cal. Cal played us tough the last 3 games. Remember the OT game at the mill? Its hard enough to beat the same team thrice not alone twice, but four times. Geesh! that's asking for trouble.

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  13. What a team called the "March Magicians"? How about Cal Poly-Pamona? As a #6 seed, they win two road games in the split West regional last year and ultimately lost in OT in the national championship.

    Now this year as a #4 seed, they knock off top seed Western Washington to advance to the regional final with a basket with 0.6 seconds left in OT. They get a rematch of last year with the BYU-Hawaii Seasiders (one of my favorite D-II nicknames). Last year, BYU-H did one of the all-time collapses, up 56-43 in front of over 4,000 fans at home, CPP outscored BYU-H 16-2 the rest of the way to win 59-58.

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  14. IUP won 91-76 over WV State and will play West Liberty, who defeated St. Augustine 90-84.

    RE the girls playing Millersville... we never played Fairmont State or Seton Hill either and no one was "oh my gosh.. a new team! we may lose...", so why now?

    I'm not saying we can't lose or that we're definitely going to win... but I'm not sitting here debating if I would have rather them played Cal U or Millersville. Don't get me wrong.. their record and schedule scares me a bit, but I'm not "wishing for Cal". Especially considering they only played us tough AT GANNON. They played horribly at home when Gannon wiped the floors with them.

    Not saying I'm not worried and not saying it's a "guaranteed W", but I'm definitely not "looking back" or "debating" any opponent...

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  15. Also, in Men's, #5 Grand Valley State leads #8 Saint Joe's, 36-34 at halftime.

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  16. The Mules of CMU advance.

    Another upset ... Herb Magee and #4 Philly U take down Stonehill by 2. They'll play #2 Bentley on Tuesday.

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  17. cc3-Glad to hear you're "not sitting here debating", but it sounds to me like you are. Anyway...

    The discussion that was being held involved the merits of playing a familiar team opposed to one you had not yet played. Of course, GU has no control over who their foe would be. It was strictly a theoretical discussion that was initiated by those at the GU game that were cheering the news that Cal was losing.

    In my opinion, as a coach, I would rather play a team I had played before, since I would have a pretty good idea of what to expect. In the early round of a tournament, not knowing an opponent isn't as important a factor, but becomes more important at the end of the tourney when the 2 best teams get together.

    As for the actual game, familiarity may be the least of GU's problems. Based on the stats and the type of players they have, it looks like this is a team that stresses defense, and is good at it. This has not been the case with most of GU's opponents, certainly not their most recent ones. They have decent size (5 of their top 10 are 5'11" or bigger), depth (9 players average double digit minutes), and experience (4 seniors start). I'm guessing that GU won't get as many opportunities to score as they're used to getting, since MU is more deliberate on offense and much better on defense.

    It looks like a different style, and GU will have to value the ball more, take good shots, etc. Hard to say, but if MU is also quick, that could add to the problem. GU could be vulnerable to speed and athleticism if the opponent has 3 or 4 players with those attributes.

    I'm not saying that the Lady Knights can't handle MU, I'm just saying that this will be a different kind of game against a different kind of team. Let's hope they can adjust.

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  18. Win or lose, I don't want Cal. I'd be horrified if we had to play Cal tonight. After embarrassing them on their court and then having them sit there and watch while we celebrate and accept our PSAC Championship awards... They're going to be out for blood.

    Again, not saying I think it's a guaranteed W, but... Gimme MU!

    GO KNIGHTS!!!!!!

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