By Michael Safford, College of Idaho Sports Information Director
LA GRANDE, Ore. - Kelsea Hurliman scored a game-high 20 points, including three consecutive three-pointers in a decisive first half run, as Eastern Oregon clinched the Cascade Conference regular-season title with a 60-50 victory over The College of Idaho at Quinn Colesium.
The No. 4 ranked Mountaineers (26-2, 16-0 CCC) maintained control of the I-84 Cup traveling trophy by winning their 20th-straight game overall and their 21st straight win at home in the NAIA National Game of the Week. EOU clinched one of the two CCC berths to the NAIA Division II National Championships with the victory.
The No. 16 ranked Lady Yotes (17-7, 13-3) slowed the tempo to a crawl in the early going, as a Felicity Jones three-point play gave The C of I their lone lead of the night at 8-7 with 12 minutes left in the half. The EOU attack took flight, as the Mounties broke open a 14-10 game with an 11-1 run - including three of Hurliman's five three-pointers on the night, to lead 25-11 with three minutes left in the half.
Leading 32-17 at the break, Eastern watched as the Yotes cut the margin to 41-30 on a pair of Katelin Shannon free throws four minutes into the second half, but post Jorie Freeman had five points and Korrie Bourn added a pair of buckets in a 11-3 run that put the game away.
Freeman connected on 7-of-9 field goals, scoring 15 points and adding five rebounds, with Bourn scoring 11 points in the win for EOU. The Mountaineers made 23-of-46 field goal attempts on the night.
Shannon led the Yotes with 15 points, with Jones and Chakala Carthen each scoring 10. The injury-riddled C of I, who played just six players, made just 40-percent of their field goals - including 1-of-10 shooting from outside the arc.
Both teams close out their regular-season next weekend in Portland against Warner Pacific and Concordia.