California (Pa.) built a strong lead in the first half and held on to claim the Division II Women’s National Championship with an 86-69 victory over Cal Baptist Friday night.
The title is the second in school history after the Lady Vulcans won the 2004 National Championship.
“It’s awesome,” Cal U coach Jess Storm said on the court following the game. “These kids worked so hard all year long. They just fought and fought. I’m proud of how they stayed together all year long.”
After scoring the game’s first basket, Cal (Pa.) quickly fell behind, 11-2. That short burst from Cal Baptist didn’t last long, however, as the Lady Vulcans countered with 21 straight points to take a commanding first-half lead.
During that stretch, Kaitlynn Fratz had nine huge points to fuel the first-half run that helped Cal (Pa.) establish a substantial lead.
Later in the half, the Lady Vulcans stretched their lead to 19 at one point on a Seairra Barnett layup with 2:57 remaining.
That cushion grew to 20 before the half, giving Cal (Pa.) a 48-28 halftime advantage.
In the second half, the Lancers attempted to rally back, scoring 25 points in just under 11 minutes to pull within 10.
Cal Baptist’s Darsha Burnside, who figured to be a force inside for the Lancers, scored 11 of her 27 during the stretch for the Lancers.
But it wasn’t enough to overcome the Lady Vulcans as Miki Glenn took the game over in the last eight minutes. The sophomore scored eight straight points to keep Cal (Pa.) ahead by a comfortable margin. She finished with a game-high and career-high 31 points after closing things out at the foul line late in the game. Her late free throws also broke the PSAC single-season record for free throws made
“Its amazing,” Glenn said on the court after the game. “(My teammates) know that they can trust me with the ball. I felt it going down the stretch, and I just hit shots that I hit all year.”
Photo Credit: Cal Athletics