TOWSON, Md. (AP)Brianna Tinsley scored 18 points, Ariana Vanderhoop added 17 and seventh-seeded Monmouth rolled over No. 1 seed Towson 80-55 on Sunday in the Colonial Athletic Association championship game, giving the Hawks a long-awaited return to the women’s NCAA Tournament.
Monmouth will be making its second NCAA appearance and first since 1983.
After scoring 44 points and leading by 10 at halftime, the Hawks slowed down in the third quarter but got a big lift from an Elizabeth Marsicano 3-pointer that gave them a 12-point lead. The Hawks also scored the last three points of the quarter and took a 56-43 lead into the fourth.
The final period was all Monmouth, particularly in the last four minutes when the Hawks went ahead by 28 points and finished with a 14-3 run.
Jania Hall scored 14 points off the bench for Monmouth (18-15) and Belle Kranbuhl had 11 points, seven rebounds and three blocked shots. Vanderhoop had eight rebounds and three assists.
Alexia Nelson had 13 points, Kylie Kornegay-Lucas 12 and Patricia Anumgba 11 points for Towson (21-11). Anumgba added eight rebounds and three assists.
Vanderhoop scored 16 points and Tinsley 12 in the first half, leading Monmouth to a 44-34 lead. The Hawks shot 52% in the first half.
As the seventh seed, Monmouth won four games in four days, including taking out each of the top three seeds – Towson, Drexel and Northeastern. The Hawks’ rout denied the Tigers their second NCAA berth.
Monmouth was making its first appearance in a conference championship game since the 2011-12 NEC Championship game.
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