PITTSBURGH, Pa. – Juniata women's basketball erased an 11-point deficit in under two minutes to earn their 76-74 come-from-behind win over Thiel College Saturday afternoon in the final game of the La Roche College Tip-Off Classic. The Eagles put up four back-to-back three's and held Thiel scoreless for the final two minutes of play to earn their second straight win and finish the tournament undefeated.
"It was a very exciting game for fans," said Head Coach Danny Young-Uhrich. "They found a way to win. I challenged them to play like winners and that's what they did. They had a rough outing but when it counted, they came through."
Junior Kate McDonald (Pa. Furnace, Pa./State College Area) earned her second consecutive double-double with team-highs of 17 points and 11 rebounds. Jordan Speck (Huntingdon, Pa./Huntingdon Area) tied McDonald in points and Jordan Hileman (Williamsburg, Pa./Williamsburg) was close behind with 16 points of her own.
Senior Natalie Glinsky (Indiana, Pa./Indiana) started the run with 1:52 left to pull the Eagles within eight. A steal by McDonald two seconds later set up Speck's fifth three of the night. Hileman then hit two back-to-back three's to give Juniata the 75-74 lead with 30 seconds to go. The Tomcats had a chance to take the lead, but missed two free throws with five seconds on the clock. McDonald was fouled after grabbing the rebound off the second miss. She added to the cushion, making the first of her two free throws with three seconds remaining.
Both McDonald and Speck were named to the All-Tournament team for their performances.
Thiel (0-2) was led by Kelly Muffley and Kelly Barzack who finished with a game-high of 23 points each.
As a team, the Eagles had a total of 11 steals to the Tomcat's four. Of their 76 points scored, 22 were off of turnovers.
The women open up home play next Saturday, Nov. 24. They face Gwynedd-Mercy in the Kennedy Sports + Recreation Center at 2 p.m. The last time the programs met was during the 2009-10 season. The Eagles fell to the Griffins by a score of 75-70. Juniata looks to tie-up the all-time series, which currently stands at 2-3, because they have been flawless at home for over a year. The Eagles have not lost a regular season home game since Dec. 30, 2010 when they fell to No. 11 Mount Union in the Juniata College Holiday Classic.
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