SIOUX CITY, Iowa - It was a tale of two halves as second-seeded Hastings (Neb.) used a strong second half to moves past No. 7 Union 79-64 in the opening round of the NAIA Division II Women's Basketball National Championship Tournament on Wednesday.
The 32-team event is being held at the Tyson Events Center in Sioux City, Iowa.
The loss ends the Bulldogs' season at 24-9 overall.
The teams traded baskets early but a 9-0 run sent Hastings ahead 15-10 with 13:00 left in the period following a Jamie Van Kirk 3-pointer. But the Bulldogs accounted for 13 of the next 14 points to grab a 23-16 lead at the 8:21 mark when Lydia Nash (SO, Florence, Ky.) sank a bucket. A 6-0 Lady Bronco cut the margin to 23-22. Eventually, Hastings pulled even twice before the half with the last time coming when Laurel Zwiener scored with 1:19 remaining. Amber Taylor (SR, Clinton, Tenn.), though, put Union up 34-32 at the break with a bucket in the paint.
The second half, however, was a different story.
Hastings (26-6 overall) came out the intermission on fire. Abby Jackson buried a 3-pointer with 14:06 remaining to cap a 17-5 run, lifting the Lady Broncos to a 49-39 lead. Alyson Roberts hit a 3-pointer at the 11:11 mark to pull the Bulldogs within 51-45. But Union's 6-2 spurt was countered by Hastings' 13-0 run, padding the Lady Bronco lead to 64-45 with 7:27 to go.
From that point, Hastings coasted the rest of way in securing the 79-64 decision.
Taylor paced Union with a game-high 26 points, while Roberts added 12.
For Hastings, Cami Bruckman recorded her second double-double of the year with a team-high 22 points and 12 rebounds. Frankie Peterson, who entered the championship averaging 5.6 points per game, exploded for a career-high 17 points on 7-of-12 shooting.
By the Numbers
- Taylor finishes the season with a program-record 207 assists.
- Taylor ends her career ranked 11th on the all-time scoring list with 1,165 points, 12th all-time in rebounds with 444 and second in assists at 444.
- Nash posted the 10th-most points by a Bulldog in a season with 570 this year.
- Roberts finishes her career tied for 14th in rebounding with Susanna Todd with 430. She also compiled 947 career points.