Presbyterian holds off Longwood women at buzzer

Published 7:54 pm Saturday, January 20, 2024

Janay Turner’s 3-point shot from a sideline out-of-boards play caught glass and Presbyterian held on, 69-66, beating the Longwood women in a Big South Conference nailbiter at the Templeton Center Saturday.

Longwood had possession on the left sideline with 2.9 seconds remaining after Presbyterian’s Bryanna Brady hit two free throws, but the Blue Hose defended well, forcing the Turner miss.

“It’s something we drew up and we needed a three,” said Longwood head coach Erika Lang-Montgomery of the last-second shot. “I thought we did as best we could in that situation.”

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The Longwood women had a chance to tie the game with 7.1 seconds on the clock, but graduate guard Anne-Hamilton LeRoy converted just 1-of-2 free throws seconds before the final play.

“I thought our team really played their hearts out today,” said Lang-Montgomery. “Gave a lot of effort. Even when we got down, we never stopped fighting. We worked really hard to get ourselves back into the game and that’s all you can ever ask for.

“We had the ball with an opportunity to tie or go ahead and Anne was able to get to the rim, just couldn’t get both of those free throws to fall.”

The Lancers placed four players in double figures for the second time in three games, led by LeRoy with a game-high 22 points on 8-for-10 shooting, and shot 50 percent as a team, but PC drained 10 3-pointers to sneak away with the victory.

 Breaking down the game

“One the [things that] continues to be an emphasis is taking care of the ball. I thought we did a great job of that tonight,” Lang-Montgomery continued. “And when we do that, it gives everybody an opportunity to score. I thought we shot the ball really well, I think 50 percent from the floor is really good execution, and so now we’ve just got tp figure out how to tighten up a little bit more defensively.”

Aside from LeRoy, who climbed to ninth all-time in scoring at Longwood early in the first quarter, Adriana Shipp-Davis scored 14 points on 6-of-11 from the field, while Otaifo Esenabhalu and Turner tallied 10 points apiece. The balance on offense allowed Longwood to battle back from a 56-44 PC lead with 1:11 left in the third quarter.

LeRoy and Laney Bone each knocked down a pair of free throws, helping the Lancers cut the deficit to eight to start the final 10 minutes and begin the comeback. Shipp-Davis scored the first basket of that frame with a jumper before buckets from LeRoy and Bone made it a 59-54 with eight minutes to play.

With PC up, 63-56, LeRoy hit a layup at the 6:39 mark. Turner followed with a pair from the line a minute and a half later and then Shipp-Davis cut to the hoop and laid it in to shave the Blue Hose lead to 63-62 with 3:59 left, prompting a Presbyterian timeout.

That was as close as Longwood got though, prior to the final seconds.

Longwood (4-14, 2-4) outshot Presbyterian (12-9, 3-3), hitting 24-of-48 from the floor and 15-of-23 free throws. PC, which received 20 points from Tilda Sjökvist and 14 each from Brady, Mara Neira and Natalie Herrin, was 24-for-49 (49 percent).

Up next for the Longwood women

Longwood is back in action Wednesday at Gardener-Webb. Game time is 7 p.m., at Paul Porter Arena.