Crusaders Open Up 18-Point Lead, Hang On This Time

Gophers Knock Deficit Down to Four Before Time Expires

TOWSON, Md. — Goucher knocked an 18-point deficit midway through the second half down to 53-49 with more than a minute left to play, but the Gophers came up empty on their final four possessions of the contest and wound up falling to Susquehanna, 55-49, tonight in a Landmark Conference game played in the Decker Sports & Recreation Center.

Following a layup by TaQuasia Lambert (Brooklyn, N.Y./Patapsco) with 1:16 left to play that allowed head coach Didi Cotton's squad to close to within four points, the Gophers (5-14, 1-8 Landmark) quickly got the ball back thanks to a steal by Adrienne Flowers (Columbia, Md./Pallotti). Even though they got off three shots and were awarded a pair of free throws, they failed to score a point on that possession.

Goucher was still down only four when Susquehanna's Eleni Dimou missed the front end of a one-and-one with :35 remaining, but this time the Gophers gave the ball back on a turnover before even getting a shot off.

Gina Palazzi's two free throws with :22 remaining closed out the scoring.

The game was reminiscent of the one the same two teams played back on Jan. 9 in Selinsgrove, Pa. Goucher trailed by 18 points at the start of the second half and didn't take its first lead until Lambert sank a 3-point basket with :16 left to play. The Gophers prevailed 52-51, giving them their first Landmark Conference victory of the season.

The leading scorers tonight for Goucher were Precious Kollock (Baltimore, Md./Patapsco) with 12 points and Amaka Ezeani (Silver Spring, Md./Paint Branch) with 11.

For the Crusaders (7-13, 2-7 Landmark), Shannon Grunwald was 6-for-10 from the field and a perfect 4-of-4 at the free-throw stripe as she finished with 17 points.