(PITTSBURGH, Pa.) - The Carnegie Mellon University women's basketball team shared the ball and locked down on defense in its Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Championship Semifinal victory against Stevenson University on Saturday, March 4. The Tartans topped the Mustangs, 65-50, to advance to the championship final to be played Sunday on its home court in Pittsburgh. The tournament is presented by Visit Myrtle Beach.
The Tartans shot 46.7% for the game, assisted on 50% of their made buckets and held the Mustangs to 34.6% shooting from the field.
Senior Lisa Murphy (McLean, Va./McLean), one of 10 Jostens Trophy finalists, led all scorers with 20 points while she picked up her 20th double-double of the season with 19 rebounds. The 6-1 centor also blocked five shots and now has 75 which overtakes her own season record from 2015. Freshman Katharine Higgins (Montclair, N.J./Montclair) recorded 13 points with three made from behind the arc, as senior Jackie Hudepohl (Saratoga, Calif./Lynbrook (Colgate)) chipped in 10 points.
The Tartans held a 21-10 lead at the end of the first quarter after an 8-0 run over the final 3:42. Freshman Megan Jaeb (San Jose, Calif./Presentation), who finished the game with seven points, started the run with a driving layup. Nine of the Tartans first-quarter points came off offensive rebounds including the last bucket of the period by freshman Dominique Petach (Pittsburgh, Pa./Norwin).
The Mustangs cut the Tartans lead to five points late in the second period but a shot at the buzzer by Hudepohl made the halftime advantage seven points for the Tartans at 34-27.
Back-to-back three-pointers by Stevenson's Hannah Crist made it a four-point game, 45-41, with 2:17 to play in the third period. Out of a Tartan timeout, Higgins drained her third three-pointer of the game to halt the Mustangs 8-1 run.
The Tartans outscored the Mustangs 17-9 in the final period, holding the visitors to 3-of-10 shooting from the field while they made 7-of-11 attempts of their own.
Mustang senior Sara Tarbert, also a Jostens Trophy finalist, scored 19 points and recorded 13 rebounds to close her career with the Division III record for consecutive double-doubles with 29.
The Tartans will face the winner of Springfield College and Waynesburg University on Sunday, March 5 at 12:00 p.m. in the championship final.