By Gio DiFazio
Championship Sunday started out with the top-seeded YSCC Elite 8 women’s favorite, the CMCC Mustangs, taking to the hardwood against the third-seeded Lynx of New Hampshire Technical Institute.
Coach Morong has his squad geared up for a deep run in the USCAA Division II tournament. First-team all-YSCC selection Brooke Reynolds put on another spectacular performance with a game-high 21 points. Reynolds would go on to win the Most Valuable Player of the YSCC Elite 8 Tournament.
The Mustangs were able to limit the explosive presence of Riselly Deoleo to just 14 points. Deoleo finished with a double-double, snagging 10 boards.
The previous day, Deoleo put on an electric performance against SMCC, scoring 33 points and snagging 12 boards to finish the day with a double-double performance.
The Mustangs took a 34–23 lead into halftime intermission after trailing early to the Lynx in the first quarter. CMCC outscored the Lynx in the second quarter to open up an 11-point lead heading to the locker room. A Central Maine 8–0 run that stretched for a large portion of the second quarter was countered by an NHTI 3-pointer with three seconds left on the clock. All six of NHTI’s second-quarter points came from beyond the arch.
NHTI could not recover from the second quarter, in which they were outscored 17–6 — after a first quarter in which the two teams had traded basket for basket.
CMCC’s height underneath the basket proved to be a large advantage, as they outscored the Lynx 32–18 inside the painted area, again led by the efforts of Brooke Reynolds. NHTI had trouble finding the basket at times, and finished shooting just 27.9 percent from the floor, while CMCC shot an efficient 49.1 percent from the floor.
CMCC earns an automatic bid into the USCAA Division II tournament; NHTI remains hopeful for an at-large bid into the tourney.