Stevenson Advances to MAC Commonwealth Semifinals, Dispatches LVC

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OWINGS MILLS, Md. – Junior Jonyae Curry posted her third double-double of the season with 13 points and 12 rebounds as fourth-seeded Stevenson University advanced in the 2018 MAC Commonwealth Women's Basketball Championship with an 80-60 win over No. 5 seed Lebanon Valley Monday night at Owings Mills Gymnasium.

With the win, the Mustangs (16-10) advance to Wednesday's semifinal round, where they will travel to face top-seeded and No. 15 Messiah at 7:00 pm.  The Falcons swept the season series, and the two teams will meet in the semifinal round for the third consecutive season.

Curry finished 5-6 at the free throw line and led three Mustangs in double figures.  Freshman Olivia Coleman also totaled 13 points on 6-12 shooting while grabbing five rebounds, while freshman Denia Campbell recorded 11 of her 12 points in the first half.  Sophomore Mariama Keita made all four of her field goal attempts and finished with a career-best nine points and also grabbed six rebounds.  Seniors Imani Sanders and Kristine Tennyson chipped in with eight points apiece.

Lebanon Valley (14-12) was paced by Becky Evans and Emily Mealey with 14 points apiece.

Lebanon Valley led 6-4 just over four minutes into the game before a 19-2 run capped by a three by freshman Brandi Hall put the Mustangs up 23-8 with 1:05 left in the first quarter.  Stevenson held the Dutchmen to just one field goal over the final 5:45 of the frame to take a 23-10 lead after the first period.

Stevenson stretched its lead to 27-10 three minutes into the second quarter, but the guests cut the lead to 13 twice, the last at 3:25 on an Evans layup that made it 29-16.  The Mustangs closed the half with an 8-4 spurt to take a 37-20 lead into intermission.

The guests chipped away at the lead and pulled within 11, 55-44, with 2:14 remaining in the third quarter.  LVC trailed 57-46 when a 15-footer to beat the buzzer by Sanders put the Mustangs up a baker's dozen headed into the final frame.  Stevenson put the game away with a 10-2 blitz over the first three-plus minutes of the fourth to build a 69-48 lead with 6:43 left following a Coleman basket.  The Dutchmen made one final push and got the lead down to 14 with 5:27 to go, but got no closer.

Stevenson shot 51.5% over the final 20 minutes and 44% for the game while limiting LVC to 35% shooting.  The Mustangs held a 47-36 rebounding advantage and forced 19 Dutchmen turnovers, leading to a 14-10 lead in points off turnovers.  Stevenson also led 20-2 in fast break points and 56-30 in the paint.