CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. - Mackenzie Lee's 3-pointer was off the mark and the clock ran out in a scramble under the goal, as No. 7 Cumberland (Tenn.) survived 65-62 against ninth-ranked Campbellsville (Ky.) here Saturday at the Powell Athletic Center in the NAIA Game of the Week.
With the win the Bulldogs move to 18-1 on the season, 9-1 in the Mid-South Conference, and have won all 11 games this season away from home, including 10-0 in true road contests.
Cumberland led almost wire-to-wire, taking an early 13-2 advantage and holding a 47-34 lead after Briannica Tye's 3-pointer with 15:20 left in the second half. But the Tigers answered with seven straight points, five from Mary Jehlik, and Campbellsville took its second lead of the contest on a 3-pointer by Mrashi Karumba with 4:56 to play.
Tye answered for the Bulldogs with a reverse layup on the next possession and London Elie had a layup on an assist from TaCouya Allen with 3:50 to play, giving CU a 62-59 edge. Jehlik's layup on a pick-and-roll with 2:35 left made it a one-point game again.
Cumberland did not score after Elie's field goal until the final minute when Tye stepped back and knocked down her second trifecta of the contest with 36.3 seconds remaining. The Bulldogs missed three shots, committed a pair of fouls, had one turnover and Elie failed on two foul shot attempts during the dry spell, but the CU defense held the Tigers to 1-of-5 shooting with one turnover during the stretch.
After Tye's 3-pointer, Lee was fouled and made one free throw. The Tigers pressed full court and CU turned the ball over, stepping out of bounds with 17.5 seconds remaining. After a timeout Campbellsville looked for a tying shot, but Lee's trifecta was off the mark and as many as five players scrambled under the goal for the loose ball, with the clock expiring in the melee.
Tye scored eight of her team-high 12 points in the second half and added five assists and two steals. She played the final 8:34 of the first half with two fouls as well.
Elie netted 10 points, eight in the second half, and blocked six shots, while Jessica Pace recorded 11 points and nine rebounds, all in the first half. Seven Cumberland players scored at least six points.
Lee led the Tigers with 17 points and Courtney Clifton hit three 3-pointers and finished with 11 points. Jehlik grabbed a game-high 12 rebounds and added eight points.
Cumberland jumped out early thanks to hitting the offensive glass, with the first seven points for CU coming on the offensive boards, including Pace's bucket and the foul. The Bulldogs led 13-2 just over four minutes into the game behind seven points from Pace and buckets by Elie, Yalonda Davis and Tye.
But Clifton hit back-to-back 3-pointers for the Tigers and the fouls started coming fast-and-furious on CU, putting Campbellsville at the foul line, where they finished 9-of-15 in the period. The home team's only lead of the half came on the first of two straight field goals from Kristen Jacob, giving the Tigers a 23-22 advantage.
Pace answered with her third basket of the period and Casie Cowan hit a layup plus the foul on the fast break. CU scored eight straight points over a three-minute stretch late in the period, starting with another bucket from Pace and including field goals by Davis, Samantha Harper and Tye. Two free throws by Simone Ryan gave the Bulldogs a 37-31 edge at the break.
Pace led all scorers with 11 points along with nine rebounds, but Cumberland had four starters with two fouls apiece and were whistled for 14 total fouls in the half compared to seven for the Tigers. Lee netted nine points to lead Campbellsville, which shot just 30 percent from the field but stayed in the game thanks to the charity stripe.