Women's Hoops Blog

Inane commentary on a game that deserves far better

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Division II final is set:

In this corner, introducing, from the Granite State, the fiercesome Ravens of Franklin Pierce!

No. 14-ranked Franklin Pierce held No. 24-ranked Delta State to just 24.1-percent shooting in the second half to claim a 58-39 victory in the semis and move into the championship game for the first time in program history.

As this blog has mentioned before, whoever is going to be the British Olympic coach better pay attention: Junior All-American and Great Britain international Johannah Leedham was the lone Franklin Pierce player in double-figures with a game-high 28 points on 11-for-22 shooting from the field, including 3-of-9 from three-point range, and converting 3-of-4 free-throws. She also added a season-high matching six assists, four rebounds and two steals.
"We are elated to be in the National Championship on Friday," said Franklin Pierce head coach Mark Swasey, the Russell Athletic/WBCA East Region Coach of the Year. "I think to get here this week, we have had to put together two different kinds of performances. (Last night) we had to outscore California and then tonight we had to defend well against Delta State."
In the other corner, introducing, from the "Show Me State," the Mavericks of Minnesota State-Mankato!

The No. 4-ranked Mavericks defeated the No. 2-rated Alaska-Anchorage Seawolves 83-60 to move into the finals.
UAA's vaunted defense finally ran into an unstoppable offense -- unstoppable in this game, at least. Mankato's 83 points were the most scored against UAA all season, and its 63 percent shooting marked the first time this season a team shot better than 50 percent against the Seawolves. Only two other opponents scored 70 or more all season against the Seawolves, the nation's defensive leaders who came into the game allowing less than 50 points per game.
The win brings MSU’s record to 31-2,

“We worked hard all year and talked about the possibility of playing in the championship game, and here we are” interim head coach Pam Gohl said. Gohl, who joined the Minnesota State women's basketball staff two seasons ago as an assistant coach, replaced Lori Fish, MSU's women's basketball head coach the last four years, who was hired to lead the St. Cloud State women's basketball program.

The game will be in San Antonio, and broadcast this Friday, March 27 on ESPN2, 8pmEST.