RICHARDSON, Texas – Keilee Burke’s blocked shot as time expired sealed a 65-63 win for Hardin-Simmons over LeTourneau in the quarterfinals of the American Southwest Conference Tournament on Thursday evening in Richardson.
Burke had a huge defensive night with 21 rebounds and she added three blocked shots as the Cowgirls outrebounded the Yellowjackets 49-36. The 21 rebounds were the most in an ASC quarterfinal game and two off the ASC Tournament record. It was her second career 20-rebound game.
HSU opened the game strong with a 10-0 run after LeTourneau scored the first basket. Freshman Parris Parmer had seven of those 10 points. HSU led 17-8 with 1:22 left in the first quarter. LeTourneau answered with an 11-0 run to tie the game on a Keauna Whitfield layup with 8:07 to play in the half.
The Cowgirls then pushed the lead back out to 35-25 with 1:19 to play in the half thanks to some strong play by freshman Hallie Edmondson, which included eight points for her in the run. HSU led 36-25 at halftime.
HSU pushed the lead out to 44-27, the largest of the game early in the second half but LeTourneau had another answer and cut the deficit to 50-41 after three quarters.
The Cowgirls led 59-46 with 5:45 to play after a Taylor Gaffney free throw. Then LeTourneau made one more push. Whitfield and Malacia Guy had five points each in a 12-0 run to cut the deficit to 59-58 with 3:03 to play.
Burke’s free throw with :32 to play made it 63-60 and Whitfield tied the game with :21 to play with a 3-pointer in the corner. HSU had the ball with a chance to take the last shot. Gaffney ran down the clock to around eight seconds when LeTourneau ran a double team at her. They poked the ball away with 5.5 to play.
On the inbounds, Parmer was fouled and she buried both free throws with :04.8. LeTourneau called timeout to advance the ball. HSU had a foul to give and fouled with 2.4 seconds to play. On the ensuing play, Burke blocked a Guy 3-point attempt to secure the win.
Gaffney had 17 points for the Cowgirls and Parris Parmer had 14. Whitfield led LeTourneau with 27 points, including 21 in the second half. Guy added 11 off the bench.
The Cowgirls improved to 20-6 on the year. It’s the first 20-win season for HSU since the 2008-09 season. LeTourneau closed its season with a record of 14-12.
HSU will play UT-Dallas at 7:30 p.m. on Friday in the semifinals.