PITTSBURGH - The Stevenson women's basketball team hung tough, but a late 12-2 run by Carnegie Mellon did it in as it fell, 65-50 in the ECAC Division III Semifinals on Saturday at Skibo Gymnasium.
Senior Sara Tarbert recorded her 30th straight double-double with 19 points and 13 rebounds, surpassing Jillian Alleyne, Oregon (1/11/15-1/4/16), ranking her fourth all-time in all three NCAA divisions for consecutive double-doubles. Her 13 rebounds surpasses the 1,000 rebound mark for her career at Stevenson, giving her a total of 1,005 in a Mustang uniform.
Tarbert hit a three pointer on her first shot attempt of the day as the teams fought a close battle, locking the game at four in almost two minutes into play. After a Tartan jumper, a layup from sophomore Jonyae Curry tied the game again, but the hosts hit a pair of three pointers and a free throw to take a 13-6 lead midway through the period.
Over the next minute, senior Niavanni Grant added two points and freshman Armani Duckett-Mooney hit a floater in the middle to make it a one possession game, but Carnegie Mellon (20-7) erased it with an 8-0 run to close the period. The hosts led 21-10 at the end of the first.
Tarbert hit her second three of the game and junior Imani Sanders got a huge block to swing the momentum to the guests early in the second period. Curry added two points on a layup, but the Tartans were able to finish a put-back and one from behind the arc as they extended their lead , 26-15, just over two minutes into play.
Stevenson (19-10) struggled to finish down low, but remained agressive on defense as it forced three turnovers and took a 5-0 run to make it a 28-20 game with 5:38 remaining in the half. Tarbert led the guests with five points down the stretch, but Carnegie Mellon held onto a 34-27 lead at halftime.
Carnegie Mellon went 48.4 percent from the floor, while Stevenson shot 34.5 percent. The Tartans led 20-16 on the boards, but the Mustangs held an 8-7 edge in forced turnovers.
After Carnegie Mellon extended its lead to 11 points twice in the third period, the Mustangs were able to cut their deficit to just four points after back-to-back three pointers from freshman Hannah Crist with just over two minutes remaining in the quarter. The hosts responded with a three pointer of their own as the Tartans held a 48-41 advantage at the end of the third.
Ward drained a jumper from the left elbow and Sanders finished a layup down low as the Mustangs made it a six point game just over three minutes into the fourth quarter. Lisa Murphy responded with an old fashioned three pointer on the other end that sparked a 12-2 run for the hosts and extended their lead.
Trailing 63-47 with just under two minutes on the clock, the Mustangs were unable to score from the field as they fell to Carnegie Mellon in the ECAC Division III Semifinal game.
The Tartans finished 46.7 percent from the floor, while Stevenson shot 34.6 percent. Carnegie Mellon led 37-32 in rebounds and 15-11 in forced turnovers.
Curry finished with nine points and five assists. Sanders and Crist each added six points and Ward grabbed five rebounds.
The game marks the end of careers for Tarbert, Ward, and Grant. In three seasons with the Mustangs, the group led the Mustangs to conference tournament and postseason appearances every year, including the program's first ever NCAA appearance in 2015 and an ECAC South Championship last season.
Jackie Boswell discusses the Mustangs' 65-50 ECAC semifinal loss to Carnegie Mellon to close out the season Saturday.