Buena Vista, Va.—The Southern Virginia University women's basketball team downed Salisbury University 66-60 in front of a record-setting crowd on Thursday evening in the CAC semifinal game.
The Knights advance to their first-ever CAC championship game in school history.
"What a great game today," said head coach Adam Wardenburg. "The atmosphere was electric and exactly what we hoped for in a semifinal game. Offensively we played a great team game We attacked the hoop all game long allowing us to be in control. Defensively we were solid, we responded to changes they made and we made big plays in the end."
Southern Virginia (21-5, 10-4 CAC) jumped out to an early lead on the Sea Gulls (17-10, 8-6 CAC) 22-14 at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter was an even battle as both teams scored 13 points, sending the game to the locker-room with the Knights on top 35-27.
In the third quarter, the Sea Gulls cut into the Knights' lead outscoring Southern Virginia 19-14.
The Knights, leading the game 49-46, started the final quarter on fire as they went on an 11-3 scoring run, taking the lead to 60-49. The Sea Gulls bounced right back as they went on an 11-0 scoring run of their own, tying up the game at 60 with 2:26 left to play.
Both teams went scoreless for a minute and a half until Katie Garrish hit a tough fadeaway jumper with only a minute remaining.
Seconds later, an offensive foul by the Sea Gulls gave the Knights the ball back with 49 seconds on the clock which Savanna Christensen capitalized, tipping in her own missed shot to take a four-point lead. Christensen then blocked Salisbury's 3-point attempt and Southern Virginia grabbed the rebound. A pair of free throws at the end sealed the deal, sending the Knights to their first-ever CAC Championship game 66-60.
Christensen led the way for Southern Virginia as she scored a career-high 22 points to go along with 10 rebounds. Garrish also had a double-double for the Knights scoring 10 points and grabbing 10 boards. Bryndie Ballam put up double-digit points also for the Knights, scoring 15 points including a pair of huge fourth quarter threes.
The Knights will travel to Christopher Newport University to play in the CAC championship game on Saturday, February 23rd at 2 p.m.