PITTSBURG -- Despite being down as many as 18 points in the game, the Pitt State women's basketball team battled back in the second half to take a two point lead w ith just over a minute left. The luck would not continue as a late three by Brittany Griswold, helped Missouri Western to a 71-67 win and a trip to the MIAA Tournament quarterfinals in Kansas City, Mo.
The Pitt State women end their season with a 17-10 overall record and an 11-7 record in conference play.
Lizzy Jeronimus led the Gorillas with 25 points, including 18 in the second half. She scored her 1,000th career point with 14:53 remaining in the first half. Lauren Brown added 11 points and a team-high eight rebounds. Y'Cedria Devers also chipped in 11 points.
Pitt State struggled from the free throw in the first haf. Though they went to the line 26 times, the team made only 13 charity shots, helping the Griffons to the 42-32 lead at the half. The team did shoot, well from the floor, hitting nearly 60 percent (22-37) from the floor. Missouri Western's advantage was helped by nine threes in the game, whiel the Gorillas made two. Pitt State also committed 18 turnovers that led to 25 Missouri Western points
An early 11-0 lead by the Griffons set the tone for the game. The visiting team took its game-high 18 point lead on a Griswold three with five minutes left in the first half.
Pitt State played sharp defense in the second half to help them overcome the Griffons' lead. The defense sparked the offense and a 10-0 Gorilla run mid-second half tied the game a 58-58 on a Brown layup with 4:30 to go. Pitt State earned its first lead of the game on a Jeronimus layup with 1:33 left. The momentum was swinging the Gorillas' was until Griswold hit back-toback threes in 30 seconds for a 68-65 Missouri Western led with 24 seconds remaining.
Griswold finished the game with 19 points for Missouri Western. Heather Howard and Alicia Bell each added 11.