ST. LOUIS – Seventh-seeded Saint Louis overcame a 16-point, second-quarter deficit to slip past No. 10 Massachusetts, 70-64, Tuesday at Chaifetz Arena in the first round of the 2018 Atlantic 10 Conference Women’s Basketball Championship.
The Billikens (16-14) advance to the quarterfinals to face second-seeded Duquesne at 4:30 pm Friday. That game along with the three other quarterfinal matchups will be streamed live on the A-10 Network. The quarterfinals, semifinals and championship final will all be played in Richmond, Va. at the Richmond Coliseum for the fifth consecutive season.
UMass (14-16) went on a 16-2 run beginning in the first quarter on a layup by Alexia Allesch. The run stretched into the second quarter and gave the Minutewomen a double-digit lead. Back-to-back buckets by Dusharm halted the run, and by the end of the second quarter, the Billikens had cut the deficit to 10.
Saint Louis completed the comeback late in the third on a Jackie Kemph jumper that gave SLU the lead back. The game went back and forth until SLU scored nine straight points to open a six-point cushion with 5:04 to play. UMass cut the lead to four on a couple of occasions, but was unable to catch the Billikens.
Kemph led all scorers with 21 points to go with eight assists. Kerri McMahan had 15 points and Jenny Vliet scored 11 points and had a team-high seven rebounds.
UMass put four players in double figures, with Maggie Mulligan recording a 14-point, 19-rebound double-double. She also had three blocks. Genesis Rivera had 13 points while Paige McCormick scored 12. Bre Hampton-Bey scored 10 points and nearly had her own double-double with nine boards. Leah McDerment had a team-high five assists.