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Inspired Pitt State Women Upset No. 25 Emporia State 73-71 - KOAM TV 7

Courtesy: PSU Sports Information

Inspired Pitt State Women Upset No. 25 Emporia State 73-71

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EMPORIA, Kan. -- Drew Roberts made two free throws with 1.3 seconds remaining to break a tie game and lift the Pitt State women's basketball team to a 73-71 victory over No. 25 ranked Emporia State Wednesday (Feb. 16) at William L. White Auditorium.

The Gorillas (14-9, 12-7 MIAA) pulled the upset victory over the Lady Hornets (15-8, 12-7 MIAA) 48 hours after Pitt State graduate assistant coach Tisharria Huggins tragically died in an two-car accident south of Pittsburg.

The win marked the first time that the Gorillas swept the season series against the Lady Hornets since the 1988-89 season. The two teams met just once a season from 1991-97. The Gorillas also snapped a three-game road losing streak against the Lady Hornets, winning for just the second time in their last 14 trips to the facility.

Pitt State trailed for just 12 seconds in the first half, building a 44-33 lead with 2:39 remaining in the initial period, before Emporia State utilized a 9-0 run to trim the margin to two, at 44-42, at the break.

The Gorillas and Lady Hornets traded shots in the second half with Pitt State taking its largest lead at 68-61 with 6:07 to play.

ESU scored the game's next seven points to draw even at 68-68, but Roberts made a pair of free throws for a 70-68 lead with 1:29 remaining.

Alli Volkens, who led all scorers with 28 points, made one of two free throws with 24.5 seconds to play.

Pitt State's Kylee Baldetti missed the front end of a 1-and-1 free throw situation with 23.3 ticks left, after rebounding Volkens' missed shot. The Lady Hornets turned the miss into a driving basket by Jocelyn Cummings and a 71-70 Emporia State lead with 15 seconds to go.

Pitt State's Courtney Tate made one of two free throws with nine seconds left, and Cummings turned the ball over in transition for the Lady Hornets with 4.0 seconds remaining.

Emporia's Rachel Hanf, who scored 17 points in the game, then was whistled for a foul as she reached in on Roberts as she tried to hustle up the floor with the clock winding down.

Roberts, who scored 10 of her team-leading 16 points in the second half, then calmly made both charity shots to lift the Gorillas to the win.

The Gorillas overcame 28 percent shooting in the second half to win the game by holding the Lady Hornets to 37 percent shooting in the final 20 minutes -- after ESU had made 53.8 percent of its shots in the first half.

Laura Glenn (12), Tate (10) and Lauren Brown (10) also scored in double figures for Pitt State. Tate posted her first career double-double by adding 10 assists.

Emporia, which committed 20 turnovers in the contest, got 11 points from Kelsey Balcom and 10 more from Cummings.

Pitt State will return to action Saturday (Feb. 19) by hosting No. 16 ranked Washburn at John Lance Arena. Tipoff is set for 1:30 p.m. (CST).

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