JAN. 8 at Bridgewater: Hornets 73, Eagles 62 Boxscore
BRIDGEWATER, Va. – The Bridgewater women's basketball team is aiming to go to Salem for the second straight season, but to do so, the Eagles will have to defeat Shenandoah, a team that won the only regular season matchup between the two teams this season.
Both teams finished the regular season with 8-10 records in conference play, but the Hornets earned the No. 8 seed and a home game in the first round by virtue of its 73-62 victory over the Eagles in Nininger Hall.
Bridgewater head coach Sarah Mathews has been emphasizing solid execution on both ends of the court.
"Looking back at that first game, we got beat a ton off the dribble," Mathews said. "We've been stressing good, solid defense in practice, keeping your woman in front of you. On offense, we've talked about just taking better care of the basketball. We've been turning the ball over way too much. And, we're going to look to push the ball in transition when we have the opportunity."
In the end, it may be a simple matter of making shots. Bridgewater took 18 more shots than the Hornets in the regular-season game, but the Eagles hit just 32.9 percent from the field (24-of-73).
Shenandoah led by six points entering the fourth quarter, but the Hornets hit the Eagles with a 9-2 run to start the quarter to take a 13-point lead. Bridgewater cut the lead back down to six points, but the Hornets responded to push the margin back to double digits with 1:16 remaining.
Ashley Stone scored 23 to lead four Hornets in double figure. Shannon Kuhn, Jordan Sondrol and McKenzie Mathis each finished with 10 points.
The winner of Tuesday's game advances to Friday's quarterfinal round at the Salem Civic Center to play Guilford, the tournament's No. 1 seed.