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Richmond, IN: The third-seeded Alice Lloyd College Lady Eagles opened River States Conference Tournament play on February 23rd as they traveled to second-seeded Indiana University East. In a contest that took five extra minutes to decide, the host Red Wolves pulled out a thrilling 102-99 win.

In the opening period, junior guard Hannah Kash and freshman forward Kenzie Maynard both scored 5 points to keep their squad close. IUE held on to end the period up 18-16. In period two, the Lady Eagles fell behind by as much as ten points (41-31) due to the play of Red Wolf guard Addie Brown. ALC saw senior guard Haley Hall heat up to score all 11 of her first-half points, but East would maintain a 49-40 cushion at intermission.

As the third period began, the Pippa Passes ladies would get 14 combined points from Hall and senior center Alexandria Clifton on offense and hold the Indiana club to just 15-period points with tighter defense. As a result, the visitor’s lead was reduced to just one (64-63) entering the final ten minutes.

In the crucial last ten minutes, the clubs battled tooth-and-nail. East held their lead, but ALC refused to go away. When Hall swished a jumper and completed the old-fashioned three-point play with a charity toss with 3:21 remaining, the Lady Eagles finally had the lead, 85-83. After back-to-back jumpers from IUS gave them an 87-85 advantage, Hall knotted the score once more (87-87) on a jumper at .26. Then, after East scored with just .06 showing (89-87), Hall incredibly drove down court and scored yet again on a clutch jumper with just .02 showing to send the game into overtime.

In overtime, Hall drained two more jumpers in the first minute (94-93). After Indiana scored again, senior guard Ali May drained a long bomb to put the Bluegrass gals on top (97-95). Following a single free throw from East (97-96), Alice Lloyd’s Bailee Brainard answered inside at 1:39; her club now led 99-96 and needed one stop. Unfortunately, IUE would tie the score at 99-99 with .37 showing. Then after Brainard’s jumper with .38 left rolled off, Indiana East would break the tie with a free throw at .14 (100-99). ALC looked good when the second Mceldowney Red Wolf charity toss missed, but unfortunately, the hosts got the offensive rebound back. Now forced to foul, ALC stopped the clock yet again but saw IU guard Kami Mceldowney sink two huge tosses. (102-99). Racing against the clock, the Lady Eagles got the ball to Clifton for a three to tie the score once more. Unfortunately, her attempt bounded off as time expired.

For Alice Lloyd (18-9), Hall led the club with 36 points and 5 rebounds. Clifton added 18 points, 8 rebounds, and 4 blocks, while Kash played well with 14 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 steals. May chipped in with 10, and freshman forward Madison Thompson also nabbed 11 boards.

The Caney Club finished shooting 44.2% (38-86) from the field and 38.1% (8-21) from long range. They connected on 83.3% (15-18) from the charity line, while adding 54 rebounds, 16 assists, 7 steals, and 8 blocks.

IUE (24-6) was paced by Brown with 29 points and Mceldowney with 26. Their squad finished shooting 40.7% (33-81) from the field and 37.5% (12-32) from behind the arc. They sank 70.6% (24-34) from the foul line and added 50 rebounds, 17 assists, and 10 steals.

The Lady Eagles have now completed NAIA play. They next return to action in the NCCAA Mideast Regional Tournament. The opponent and date will be announced shortly.