Tremblay, HPU women turn back USC Upstate
High Point University found just enough at the end to hang on Wednesday night at the Millis Center.
Squandering all of a 11-point lead in the second half, the Panthers kept USC Upstate from taking the lead with a defensive stop with 32.8 seconds to go, and Tayler Tremblay hit five of six free throws the rest of the way for a 75-69 victory.
With the score tied at 67. Tremblay hit a free throw with two minutes to go to put HPU ahead for good. Stacia Robertson hit a layup to make the margin three and the Spartans pulled within one with 1:10 left.
USCS got the ball back and had the chance to take the lead when HPU forced a held ball with 3 seconds left on the shot clock. The Spartans failed to get the ball inbounds within five seconds, and Tremblay sealed the win at the foul line.
Tremblay led the Panthers (2-1) with 22 points and Robertson had 11. Sharmayne Edwards and Brittany Starling each had 19 for Upstate (2-1).
After falling behind early in the second half, HPU put together a 15-3 run to go up 58-43 with 13:10 left to play. Maja Michalska got it started with a jumper, Robertson converted a fast break layp, Lindsay Pukcett hit a 3, Tremblay converted a couple of buckets and Latrice Phelps hit a free throw.
The Panthers again led by 11 at 60-49 but a hectic pace in which both teams pushed the ball seemed to take its toll on HPU. USCS outscored the Panthers 8-7 over the next eight minutes to tie it at 67.
Teddy Vincent canned a 3 at the buzzer to put the Panthers up 43-40 at halftime as they rallied from seven down in the last four minutes.
Robertson started the rally with a couple of follows (the first one her first bucket of the half) and a free throw to get HPU within 37-34.
Tremblay then got hot, hitting jumpers on three straight possessions to put the Panthers up 40-38 with 30 seconds left in the half, their first lead since 32-21 with 8:15 left in the half.
Edwards made a jumper, her sixth bucket of the half, setting the stage for Vincent.
Tremblay led the Panthers with 10 at the half, followed by Robertson with 6. Edwards led the Spartans with 15 at the break.
HPU started slowly, missing four of its first five shots to trail, 7-2.
But the Panthers scored on six of their next eight possession to take their first lead at 15-13. HPU led by many as at 21-16 but USCS went on a 20-8 run, most of it while the Panthers dealt with foul trouble.