A late second half rally was not enough as the Screaming Eagles fell to Gallaudet University 69-61 in the first round of the NEAC tournament.
The Bison of Gallaudet got out to a quick start, jumping out on the Eagles 9-2 lead, just 3 minutes into the game. Danesha Triplett established herself inside early, scoring the first 4 points for the Eagles. Trailing 9-6, Triplett score again underneath, cutting the lead to one. Despite the Eagles cutting the lead, the Bison went on a 11-0 run to open the lead to 20-8. Amerisse Rodgers ended the run, banking in a jump shot to cut the lead to 10.
Sharolin Sanders swished home the first 3 pointer of the game for the Eagles, bringing the deficit to just 5, 23-18. With 3:50 remaining in the first half, Sanders nailed another 3 pointer to tie the game up at 27. The Eagles took their first lead of the game when Rodgers knocked down a 3 pointer to go up 30-29 with 2:11 remaining. Despite the Eagles taking the lead, the couldn't hold it as Gallaudet took a 37-35 lead at the break. Sharolin Sanders lead all scorers in the first half with 13 points.
Determined not to start the second half like the first, CSE got things going when Amerisse Rodgers dropped a running jumper to cut the lead to 41-39. Both team stepped up their defense in the second half, scoring just 4 points each in the first 4 minutes of the half. With 14:02 remaining, Alivia Rseboro took it the length of the court for an easy layup, bringing the Eagles back to within 45-43. Cheyenne Grant gave the Eagles back the lead when she banged home a 3 pointer, giving the Eagles a 48-47 lead.
Lindsay Stergio of Gallaudet hit back to back jumpers in the paint to give the Bison a 53-48 lead with 7:47 remaining in the game. Kelly O'Dell kept the Eagles in the game, knocking down 4 straight free throws to cut the lead to 1. Despite the Eagles tying the game up at 54, Britny Lathem of Gallaudet knocked down a 3 pointer as the shot clock expired, giving the Bison a 3 point lead. The Bison added 6 more quick points, opening up their biggest lead of the second half, 63-54. Sanders broke the scoring drought, making a layup and cutting the lead to 64-57. Rodgers followed that up with a 3 pointer to bring the Eagles to within 66-61 with 41 seconds remaining. Despite a late rally, the Eagles dropped a tough one 69-61.
Sharolin Sanders led the Eagles with 17 points off the bench. Kelly O'Dell finished with 10 points, 17 rebounds, and 7 assists. The Eagles finish the season with a 16-10 record and a 10-7 record in the NEAC.